Three Orchids, Acropera, Peristeria Elata, Cattleya Bicolor
William Jacob Hays
Hays made regular sketching excursions to the American forests and frontier, but he did not have to travel far to find the exotic specimens depicted here since orchids were cultivated in greenhouses in his hometown, New York City. The artist began with pencil drawings—still visible in some areas—and then completed the plant forms in oil paint. These studies were among many he made in preparation for his large, highly detailed painting Bouquet of Orchids, 1871 (Private collection).
Oil and graphite on canvas
14 1/2 x 8 1/2 in. (36.8 x 21.6 cm)
Frame: 15 1/4 x 8 3/4 in. (38.7 x 22.2 cm)
Inscribed upper right: "Acropera; Inscribed right center: Aug 31. / 1869"; Inscribed bottom left : "Sep. 8. / 69"
Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Leonard L. Milberg
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