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Extreme Nature: Two Landscape Paintings from the Age of Enlightenment

Fri Dec 15 2017 – Sun Dec 9 2018

Seattle Art Museum

Fourth Floor Galleries

This installation welcomes a newly discovered French masterpiece to SAM’s collection, Shipwreck off the Coast of Alaska (1806) by Louis-Philippe Crépin. Born in Paris, Crépin (1772–1851) was a specialist in marine painting. Many of his works are in the National Maritime Museum in Paris; this is likely the first painting by Crépin in an American museum. In its rendering of a tragic shipwreck that took place in 1786, it transcends standard marine painting conventions and stands alone within the artist’s oeuvre, achieving a peak of clarity, drama, and pathos.

Image: Shipwreck Off the Coast of Alaska, 1806, Louis-Philippe Crepin, French, 1772-1851, oil on canvas, 40 15/16 × 58 11/16 in., Seattle Art Museum, European Art Acquisition Fund; Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Art Acquisition Fund; by exchange Gift of Mrs. Lew V. Day in memory of her husband; Gift of Arthur F. Ederer; H. Neil Meitzler, Issaquah, Washington; Col. Philip L. Thurber Memorial; Gift of Mrs. Donald E. Frederick; The late Mr. Arrigo M. Young and Mrs. Young in memory of their son, Lieut. (j.g.) Lawrence H. Young; Phillips Morrison Memorial; Gift of Mrs. Oswald Brown, in memory of her parents Simeon and Fannie B. Leland; Gift of Miss Grace G. Denny in memory of her sister Miss Coral M. Denny; Gift of friends in memory of Frank Molitor; Purchased from funds contributed in memory of Henry H. Judson; Purchased from the bequest of Charles M. Clark; Gift of Mrs. John C. Atwood, Jr.; Norman and Amelia Davis Collection; Norman Davis Collection; Mrs. Cebert Baillargeon, in memory of her husband, 2017.15.