Skip Navigation

Shinnecock Hills

William Merritt Chase

American Art

This pastel is one of the many works that William Merritt Chase made between 1891 and 1902, while he was running the Shinnecock Summer School of Art, the first school in the United States devoted to plein air practice. It depicts a broad expanse of the terrain of eastern Long Island—sandy dunes covered in grasses and bayberry bushes. Chase applied the pastel in soft, feathery strokes of pure color, some of which he smudged and blended, in order to capture the fleeting impressions of light and atmosphere on a sunny day.

One of the most celebrated painters of his generation, Chase also gained recognition as a master of pastel, a medium that enjoyed renewed appreciation among artists and audiences in late nineteenth-century America.
MEDIUM Pastel on commercially pre-primed canvas, with hand-applied gray ground, attached to a wooden strectcher
DATES ca. 1895
DIMENSIONS 20 x 24 in. (50.8 x 61 cm) frame: 30 5/8 × 33 1/2 × 2 3/8 in. (77.8 × 85.1 × 6 cm)  (show scale)
SIGNATURE Signed lower left, in pastel: "Wm M. Chase"
CREDIT LINE Gift of William A. Putnam
MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
CAPTION William Merritt Chase (American, 1849–1916). Shinnecock Hills, ca. 1895. Pastel on commercially pre-primed canvas, with hand-applied gray ground, attached to a wooden strectcher, 20 x 24 in. (50.8 x 61 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of William A. Putnam, 19.96 (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 19.96_SL1.jpg)
IMAGE overall, 19.96_SL1.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
"CUR" at the beginning of an image file name means that the image was created by a curatorial staff member. These study images may be digital point-and-shoot photographs, when we don\'t yet have high-quality studio photography, or they may be scans of older negatives, slides, or photographic prints, providing historical documentation of the object.
RIGHTS STATEMENT No known copyright restrictions
This work may be in the public domain in the United States. Works created by United States and non-United States nationals published prior to 1923 are in the public domain, subject to the terms of any applicable treaty or agreement. You may download and use Brooklyn Museum images of this work. Please include caption information from this page and credit the Brooklyn Museum. If you need a high resolution file, please fill out our online application form (charges apply). The Museum does not warrant that the use of this work will not infringe on the rights of third parties, such as artists or artists' heirs holding the rights to the work. It is your responsibility to determine and satisfy copyright or other use restrictions before copying, transmitting, or making other use of protected items beyond that allowed by "fair use," as such term is understood under the United States Copyright Act. The Brooklyn Museum makes no representations or warranties with respect to the application or terms of any international agreement governing copyright protection in the United States for works created by foreign nationals. For further information about copyright, we recommend resources at the United States Library of Congress, Cornell University, Copyright and Cultural Institutions: Guidelines for U.S. Libraries, Archives, and Museums, and Copyright Watch. For more information about the Museum's rights project, including how rights types are assigned, please see our blog posts on copyright. If you have any information regarding this work and rights to it, please contact
Not every record you will find here is complete. More information is available for some works than for others, and some entries have been updated more recently. Records are frequently reviewed and revised, and we welcome any additional information you might have.