Focused with a true artist’s eye for the quintessence of a scene, this engaging backwater view shows the rustic wharves somewhere along Harbor Cove in Gloucester’s Inner Harbor around the turn of the century. Gloucester’s seafaring legacy and picturesque ambiance have attracted artists like Braun ever since Fitz Hugh Lane and Winslow Homer first painted there in the 19th Century.
Prominent on the hill in the distance is what appears to be the tower of Gloucester’s Old City Hall, one of the distinguishing landmarks above the harbor. Also skillfully captured is the unique character of the aging wharf buildings, home to the small, ever present sail lofts, boat shops and chandleries that made up the backwaters of working seaports such as Gloucester.
An early work by Braun, this painting shows the powerful command of composition and color that would bring him fame in later years. The softening effect of early morning light brushing across the town and harbor highlights his strikingly honest rendering of the work boats in the foreground. He has etched the harbor’s essence into this work, preserving an image of earlier times on Gloucester’s ever changing waterfront.
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