AMERICAN GALLERY

Greatest American Painters

Mary Blood Mellen (1817 – 1882)

Posted by American Gallery on July 15, 2012


Moonlight, Gloucester Harbor

Field Beach, Stage Fort Park

Taking In Sails At Sunset

Sunset Over Ten Pound Island

Moonlight Landscape

Dana Beach, Manchester

A Storm Breaking Away – Ship At Anchor On A Lee Shore

Owl’s Head

Shipwreck On The Beach

Two Master At Sea

Dolliver’s Neck And The Western Shore From Field Beach

A Quiet Harbor

Blood Family Homestead

Gloucester Harbor

On The Coast

A Smart Blow

Norman’s Woe

Moonlight Fishing Scene, Halfway Rock

Gloucester Harbor And Dolliver’s Neck

Three Master At Sunset

Boats In Gloucester Harbor

Castine Harbor

Two Ships In Rough Water

Entrance Of Somes Sound From Southwest Harbor

View Of Southwest Harbor (with Fitz Henry Lane)

Coast Of Maine (with Fitz Henry Lane)

 

4 Responses to “Mary Blood Mellen (1817 – 1882)”

  1. Bruce said

    I was interested to see a 19th century female artist so enamored of maritime themes. My enthusiasm waned, however, when I learned that she “studied under Fitz Hugh Lane (also called Fitz Henry Lane)” and learned by “emulating his style and directly collaborating on at least one painting.” Indeed, “the question of Mellen’s participation in Lane’s painting process is . . . intriguing. Artists have worked with assistants and apprentices for centuries; often a canvas coming out of the studio of Rubens or Bellini, say, may have had the artist’s signature, but was the handiwork, in part, of an assistant . . . Often Mellen copied directly from Lane, so the canvases appear to be twins.” So it appears these were his interests that she was following, not her own.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mary_Blood_Mellen
    http://vallejogallery.com/artist.php?artist=Mary_Blood_Mellen&id=338
    http://articles.boston.com/2007-08-24/ae/29234636_1_works-light-opera-master

    • The Luminists often choose similar subjects and treated them in similar ways. This would be true, for example, of Kensett or Salmon or Bricher. Mellen was both Lane’s student, collaborator, and probably lover, and it is sometimes very difficult to tell if a work is entirely by Lane or Mellen. She is probably one of the very best female artists in America in the 19th century, and deserves to be considered one of the best of the Luminist painters. In any event, Luminist seascapes, in particular, share many technical and stylistic similarities.

  2. vincenzo said

    I share Bruce’s comment about the works being performed by the disciples in the studies of the masters, that, given the great similarity between them, often raising doubts of attributions works. In fact, from the Botteghe (the Italian word that stands for the laboratory) of the great artists of the past, were mass-produced many paintings which, while reflecting the style of the master, were performed almost entirely by the disciples. The first master who was endowed with a large laboratory, almost industrial, with many pupils and assistants, was the great Giotto, who was faced with many important commissions. Then, later, other great artists, great demand, as already mentioned, and Bellini, Rubens, Raphael, had to rely almost entirely on helping learners, personally intervening only in some particular or simply directing the work. One of the few great artists, to have done everything alone was Michelangelo, who lived alone and was temperamentally quite surly, and he did not like to share anything with other artists, and even enlist the help of disciples. In fact, the great frescoes of the Sistine Chapel, are the result only of his hands and his genius.

    I like enough Mary Blood Mellen landscapes marine. The sea is one among the natural subjects that attract artists.
    The sea has a special fascination, perhaps because it represents the water element for excellence, which combines with the other vital elements such as earth, air (sky) and fire (the Sun and light).
    I personally, from the very first time that I met the sea (I was a child), I was enchanted.
    I saw that huge expanse of water as a living being, animated by a great energy. Furthermore, hearing the continuous sound of waves breaking over the rocks, or invading the beach and then retire, and start over with an uninterrupted rhythm, I got the impression that it even speak, and tell many stories old.
    For me the sea is something relaxing, and I find it beautiful when it is calm, and when it is excited and nervous.

    • Bruce said

      “The sea is one among the natural subjects that attract artists. The sea has a special fascination, perhaps because it represents the water element for excellence, which combines with the other vital elements such as earth, air (sky) and fire (the Sun and light). I personally, from the very first time that I met the sea (I was a child), I was enchanted. I saw that huge expanse of water as a living being, animated by a great energy. Furthermore, hearing the continuous sound of waves breaking over the rocks, or invading the beach and then retire, and start over with an uninterrupted rhythm, I got the impression that it even speak, and tell many stories old. For me the sea is something relaxing, and I find it beautiful when it is calm, and when it is excited and nervous.”

      Nicely said, Mr. V. Thanks for sharing this.

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