The Waterfall

Christopher Pearce Cranch (1813–1892)


Oil on canvas

Gift of Sewell C. Biggs; 1992.6

Christopher Pearce Cranch was born in the eastern United States, but the imagery of the American West heavily influenced his artwork. He studied divinity and became a Unitarian minister, but his painting and poetry associates with the transcendentalists of Ralph Waldo Emerson. The transcendentalist idealization of nature and the landscapes of the Hudson River School help to illustrate the nation’s excitement for westward expansion during this period.