The Rising Moon: Autumn

Artist: Dwight William Tryon (1849-1925)
Historical period(s)
Oil on wood panel
H x W (overall): 51 x 80.3 cm (20 1/16 x 31 5/8 in)
United States
Credit Line
Gift of Charles Lang Freer
Freer Gallery of Art
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view

Oil painting

autumn, landscape, moon, night, nocturne, United States

From 1889 to 1919
Charles Lang Freer (1854-1919), purchased from the artist, Dwight William Tryon in May 1889 [1]

From 1920
Freer Gallery of Art, gift of Charles Lang Freer in 1920 [2]


[1] See Accession List, Collections Management office. This object was originally given the registration number F1906.75; the registration number was later changed, and the current number given to correspond with the correct date of purchase. See also, Curatorial Remarks 2, G.D. Guest, 1930, in the object record, as well as Curatorial Remark 6, Linda Merrill, May 1989, in the object record.

[2] The original deed of Charles Lang Freer's gift was signed in 1906. The collection was received in 1920 upon the completion of the Freer Gallery.

Previous Owner(s)

Dwight William Tryon (C.L. Freer source) 1849-1925
Charles Lang Freer 1854-1919


In the late 1880s, Tryon painted a  number of New England haystack scenes lit by a harvest moon. The romantic subject was popular with American collectors who favored French landscapes in the style of the Barbizon School, and The Rising Moon: Autumn became one of Tryon's most famous paintings. It had just been completed when Freer paid an unannounced call at Tryon's studio and bought the painting straight off the easel. The Rising Moon is the first of the American paintings Freer acquired that he kept for the collection.

Published References
  • , John Caldwell, Oswaldo Rodriguez Roque, Dale T. Johnson, Doreen Bolger Burke, Natalie Spassky, Linda Bantel. American Paintings in the Metropolitan Museum of Art. 3 vols., New York. vol. 3: p. 108.
  • Rare Paintings in New Galleries., February 10, 1910. .
  • Mary Ellen Hayward. The Influence of the Classical Oriental Tradition. vol. 14, no. 2 Chicago, Summer 1979. fig. 12.
  • Ralph Sessions. The Poetic Vision: American Tonalism. Exh. cat. New York, 2005. fig. 31.
  • Burns A. Stubbs. Paintings, Pastels, Drawings, Prints, and Copper Plates by and Attributed to American and European Artists, Together with a List of Original Whistleriana, in the Freer Gallery of Art. vol. 1, no. 2, 2nd edition. Washington, 1967. vol. 1: no. 2, pl. 15.
  • Thomas Lawton, Linda Merrill. Freer: a legacy of art. Washington and New York, 1993. p. 21, fig. 9.
  • David Park Curry. James McNeill Whistler at the Freer Gallery of Art. Washington and New York, 1984. p. 32, fig. 55.
  • William H. Gerdts, Diana Dionodica Sweet, Robert R. Preato. Tonalism: An American Experience. Exh. cat. New York. p. 44.
  • Nichols Clark. Charles Lang Freer: An American Aesthete in the Gilded Era. vol. 11, no. 4 New York, October 1979. p. 55, fig. 2.
  • Charles Henry Caffin. The Art of Dwight W. Tryon: An Appreciation. New York. p. 71.
  • Henry C. White, Houghton Mifflin Co. The Life and Art of Dwight William Tryon. Boston and New York, 1930. p. 78.
  • Susan Hobbs. A Connoisseur's Vision of America: The American Collection of Charles Lang Freer., August 1977. p. 82.
  • Linda Merrill. An Ideal Country: Paintings by Dwight William Tryon in the Freer Gallery of Art. Washington and Hanover and London, 1990. cat. 3, pp. 104-107.
  • Aline B. Saarinen. The Proud Possessors: The Lives, Times and Tastes of Some Adventurous American Art Collectors. New York. p. 123.
  • Charles Henry Caffin. American Masters of Painting: Being Brief Appreciations of Some American Painters. Garden City, N.Y. p. 166.
  • David Park Curry. Charles Lang Freer and American Art. vol. 118, no. 258, special issue., August 1983. pp. 168-179, fig. 11.
  • Rill Evelyn Jackman. American Arts. New York. p. 177, 180.
Collection Area(s)
American Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
SI Usage Statement

Usage Conditions Apply

There are restrictions for re-using this image. For more information, visit the Smithsonian's Terms of Use page.

The information presented on this website may be revised and updated at any time as ongoing research progresses or as otherwise warranted. Pending any such revisions and updates, information on this site may be incomplete or inaccurate or may contain typographical errors. Neither the Smithsonian nor its regents, officers, employees, or agents make any representations about the accuracy, reliability, completeness, or timeliness of the information on the site. Use this site and the information provided on it subject to your own judgment. The Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery welcome information that would augment or clarify the ownership history of objects in their collections.