A wide stretch of snowy landscape. Signature in lower left corner.

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Artist: Dwight William Tryon (1849-1925)
Designer: Stanford White (1853-1906)
Historical period(s)
Oil on canvas
H x W (overall): 71.5 x 155.2 cm (28 1/8 x 61 1/8 in)
United States
Credit Line
Gift of Charles Lang Freer
Freer Gallery of Art
Accession Number
On View Location
Freer Gallery 11: A Perfect Harmony

Oil painting

snow, United States, winter

From 1893 to 1919
Charles Lang Freer (1854-1919), purchased from the artist, Dwight William Tryon on April 12, 1893 [1]

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


[1] See Voucher No. 22, April 1893, Box 2, Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives. Curatorial Remarks, S. Hobbs, 1978: One of a series of four canvases based on the seasons, the painting was commissioned for Freer's new home in Detroit which was built in 1892-1893.

[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) and Custodian(s)

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


A wide stretch of snowy landscape. Signature in lower left corner.


In 1891, Tryon offered to paint a picture or two for the house Charles Lang Freer was building in Detroit, "a dream of Beauty," as it was described, "inside and out." Freer readily accepted Tryon's offer, and before long the commission had grown to include five landscapes for the main hall: Autumn (F1893.16), Summer (F1893.15), Winter, Springtime (F1893.14) and Dawn (F1906.86). In these "decorations," as Tryon called these paintings, the artist attempted to maintain the classic "purity" of the interior design by keeping a consistent horizon in every scene. Although some of the paintings were occassionaly exhibited separately, Freer and Tryon always regarded them as an "ensemble."

Tryon rarely painted winter landscapes. He detested the cold weather that drove him indoors, and said he had an aversion to snow scenes. Winter however, was a necessary part of the cycle of seasonal paintings that Tryon produced for Freer's home in Detriot. As the artist's friend Thomas Dewing observed, the austerity of the landscape conveys Tryon's melancholy response to the season. "A thousand miles from home," Dewing said upon seeing the painting, "and friends all dead!"

Published References
  • Thomas W. Brunk. The House that Freer Built. no. 3, Spring 1981. p. 18.
  • Ideals of Beauty: Asian and American Art in the Freer and Sackler Galleries. Thames and Hudson World of Art London and Washington, 2010. p. 29.
  • 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. 82.
  • Susan Hobbs. A Connoisseur's Vision of America: The American Collection of Charles Lang Freer., August 1977. p. 84.
  • Marc Simpson. Like Breath on Glass: Whistler, Inness, and The Art of Painting Softly. Exh. cat. Williamstown and New Haven, 2008. p. 97, fig. 38.
  • Timothy J Standring. Whistler to Cassatt: American Painters in France
    . Exh. cat. New Haven, CT, November 16, 2021. p. 102, fig. 25.
  • Linda Merrill. An Ideal Country: Paintings by Dwight William Tryon in the Freer Gallery of Art. Washington and Hanover and London, 1990. cat. 11, pp. 112-117.
  • David Park Curry. Charles Lang Freer and American Art. vol. 118, no. 258, special issue., August 1983. pp.168-179, pl. 7.
  • Melody Barnett Deusner. Aesthetic Painting in Britain and America: Collectors, Art Worlds, Networks. London, England, November 17, 2020. p. 185, fig. 88c.
Collection Area(s)
American Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
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