Henry Wolcott Boss (1827-1916)
Henry Wolcott Boss (1827-1916). Haying, c.1860-70. Oil on canvas measures 14 x 24 inches, 16 x 26 inches in a c.1900 frame. Excellent condition, recently cleaned by our conservator. One tear and one puncture repaired as can be observed (verso). No canvas loss. No overpaint in areas other than the two spots previously mentioned. Signed lower left.
Henry Wolcott Boss, variously listed as having lived from either 1820-1916 or 1827-1916. Binghamton, NY artist who painted in the style of the mid-nineteenth century Hudson River School romanticism.A technically accomplished and diverse artist, Boss remains a mystery within the Hudson River tradition, a style of landscape painting that took a romantic approach to depicting the Hudson River Valley, Catskills, Berkshires, White Mountains, and points further west. He was extremely talented in the realms of portrait, genre, landscape, seascape and still life, but history leaves a gap as to where he received his training. Boss traveled extensively to such locations as Lake George and Franconia Notch and likely encountered many of the great painters of his time.A resident of Binghamton, New York, Boss maintained a studio between 1875 and 1904, but sadly never made a financial success of his art. The exhibition records of the National Academy of Design list two paintings by a H. Wolcott Boss in 1878, proving that his works were well received, but perhaps the artist struggled in finding a market in western New York.
Boss’ work had gone largely uncelebrated until his hometown museum, the Robertson Center for the Arts, commemorated him with an exhibition in 1972. Displaying woodland interiors as well as seascapes, this exhibition set Boss in his rightful place among his contemporaries.