Albert Pinkham Ryder was regarded as a visionary and experimental painter among Centennial-era artists. He often addressed the there of human destiny, as played out In literature or the Bible but he rendered his subjects with highly simplified or expressively exaggerated forms and densely textured surfaces that challenged the visual expectations of his audience. Ryder based this seascape on a poem by the Englishman Robert Southey that recounted the ocean voyage of a medieval king to the New World: "Day after day, day after day the same . . . A weary waste of waters!"