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  • Constable’s cloud studies represent perhaps one of the most original and surprising aspects of his evolving approach to the art of landscape painting. This exquisite example is in several respects unusual. Unlike numbers of other bona fide cloud studies—the product of hours of plein-air work on Hampstead Heath in 1821 and 1822, together with gradually lengthening sets of notes in which Constable recorded on each the weather conditions, topographical orientation, and the time of day—a narrow strip of “landscape” is clearly indicated along the bottom margin of the panel, and birds wheel and swoop in what is in effect a foreground that elsewhere consists entirely of void and energy, the intangible space held in by clouds scudding far overhead. Michael Rosenthal has noted the congruence of the larger Romanticism of Constable’s strong feeling for skies and also the regulation of light in the landscape by the predictable behavior and motion of specific kinds of cloud, with lines from “Prelude VI,” by Wordsworth, that appear to reflect a comparable and quintessentially Romantic outlook: “The unfettered clouds and regions of the Heavens, Tumult and peace, the darkness and the light— Were all like workings of one mind, the features Of the same face, blossoms upon one tree: Characters of the great Apocalypse, The types and symbols of Eternity" (cited in Rosenthal, 1983, p. 167).
?:PX_curatorial_comment
  • Constable’s cloud studies represent perhaps one of the most original and surprising aspects of his evolving approach to the art of landscape painting. This exquisite example is in several respects unusual. Unlike numbers of other bona fide cloud studies—the product of hours of plein-air work on Hampstead Heath in 1821 and 1822, together with gradually lengthening sets of notes in which Constable recorded on each the weather conditions, topographical orientation, and the time of day—a narrow strip of “landscape” is clearly indicated along the bottom margin of the panel, and birds wheel and swoop in what is in effect a foreground that elsewhere consists entirely of void and energy, the intangible space held in by clouds scudding far overhead. Michael Rosenthal has noted the congruence of the larger Romanticism of Constable’s strong feeling for skies and also the regulation of light in the landscape by the predictable behavior and motion of specific kinds of cloud, with lines from “Prelude VI,” by Wordsworth, that appear to reflect a comparable and quintessentially Romantic outlook: “The unfettered clouds and regions of the Heavens, Tumult and peace, the darkness and the light— Were all like workings of one mind, the features Of the same face, blossoms upon one tree: Characters of the great Apocalypse, The types and symbols of Eternity" (cited in Rosenthal, 1983, p. 167).
  • Constable’s cloud studies represent perhaps one of the most original and surprising aspects of his evolving approach to the art of landscape painting. This exquisite example is in several respects unusual. Unlike numbers of other bona fide cloud studies—the product of hours of plein-air work on Hampstead Heath in 1821 and 1822, together with gradually lengthening sets of notes in which Constable recorded on each the weather conditions, topographical orientation, and the time of day—a narrow strip of “landscape” is clearly indicated along the bottom margin of the panel, and birds wheel and swoop in what is in effect a foreground that elsewhere consists entirely of void and energy, the intangible space held in by clouds scudding far overhead. Michael Rosenthal has noted the congruence of the larger Romanticism of Constable’s strong feeling for skies and also the regulation of light in the landscape by the predictable behavior and motion of specific kinds of cloud, with lines from “Prelude VI,” by Wordsworth, that appear to reflect a comparable and quintessentially Romantic outlook: “The unfettered clouds and regions of the Heavens, Tumult and peace, the darkness and the light— Were all like workings of one mind, the features Of the same face, blossoms upon one tree: Characters of the great Apocalypse, The types and symbols of Eternity”. (cited in Rosenthal, 1983, p. 167)
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  • Alternate title :: Stratocululus Clouds
  • Alternate title :: Stratocumulus Cloud
  • Bibliograpic reference ::
  • Bibliograpic reference :: Basil Taylor, Constable, paintings, drawings and watercolours;, Phaidon, London, UK, 1973, p. 199, note 30, no. 63, NJ18 C74 T39 + (YCBA)
  • Bibliograpic reference :: Canaletto to Constable, paintings of town and country from the Yale Center for British Art, Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, Conn., 1998, pp. 17-18, 107, pl. 41, ND1354.4 Y25 1998 (YCBA)
  • Bibliograpic reference :: Charlotte Burns, Key Lots, Old Masters, The Art Newspaper, vol. 19, July/August 2010, p. 48, Available online at Art Full Text (H.W. Wilson) , Also available at the Lewis Walpole Library.
  • Bibliograpic reference :: Christine Dixon, Turner to Monet, the triumph of landscape painting, National Gallery of Australia, Canberra Seattle, WA, 2008, pp. 66-7, cat. 11, ND1349.5 D59 2008 + (YCBA)
  • Bibliograpic reference :: Giles Waterfield, Mr Mellon, RA : the magazine for the Friends of the Royal Academy, No. 96, Autumn 2007, pp. 68-69, V 1905 (YCBA) , Detached from RA, no.96 (2007:Autumn)
  • Bibliograpic reference :: Graham Reynolds, The later paintings and drawings of John Constable, Yale University Press, New Haven, CT, 1984, p. 83 (v. 1), no. 21.57, pl. 262, NJ18 C74 R485 + (YCBA)
  • Bibliograpic reference :: John Baskett, Paul Mellon's legacy, a passion for British art : masterpieces from the Yale Center for British Art, Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, CT, 2007, pp 287-8, no. 98, pl. 98, N5220 M552 P38 2007 OVERSIZE (YCBA)
  • Bibliograpic reference :: John Constable, a selection of paintings from the Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Mellon., National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC, 1969, pp. 42-43, no. 43, NJ18 C74 U5 (YCBA)
  • Bibliograpic reference :: John E. Thornes, John Constable's skies, a fusion of art and science, University of Birmingham Press, Birmingham, UK, 1999, pp. 238-39, no. 23, pl. 105, NJ18 C74 T56 1999 (YCBA)
  • Bibliograpic reference :: Katharine Baetjer, Glorious nature, British landscape painting, 1750-1850, Zwemmer publisher, London, 1993, pp. 31, 196-7, no. 58, ND1354.4 B34 1993 (YCBA)
  • Bibliograpic reference :: Leslie Parris, Constable, Tate Publishing, London, UK, 1991, pp. 230-1, no. 121, pl. 121, NJ18 C74 P372 1991 + (YCBA)
  • Bibliograpic reference :: Leslie Parris, Constable, pictures from the exhibition, Tate Publishing, London, UK, 1991, p. 43, pl. 39, NJ18 C74 P373 1991 (YCBA)
  • Bibliograpic reference :: Luke Herrmann, Nineteenth century British painting, Giles de la Mare, London, 2000, p. 129, col. pl. 25, ND467 H47 2000 (YCBA)
  • Bibliograpic reference :: Malcolm Cormack, A Concise Catalogue of Paintings in the Yale Center for British Art, Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, CT, 1985, pp. 60-61, N590.2 A83 (YCBA)
  • Bibliograpic reference :: Malcolm Cormack, A concise catalogue of paintings in the Yale Center for British Art, Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, CT, 1985, pp. 60-61, N590.2 A83 (YCBA)
  • Bibliograpic reference :: Mark Evans, Constable's Skies: Paintings and Sketches by John Constable, Thames & Hudson, New York, New York, p. 66-67, fig. 26, NJ18.C74 E93 2018 (LC) (YCBA)
  • Bibliograpic reference :: Michael Rosenthal, Constable, the painter and his landscape, Yale University Press, New Haven, CT, 1983, p. 167, NJ18 C74 R68 OVERSIZE (YCBA)
  • Bibliograpic reference :: Paul Mellon's Legacy, a passion for British art. [large print labels], Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, CT, 2007, v. 3, N5220 M552 +P381 2007, Mellon Shelf (YCBA)
  • Bibliograpic reference :: Paul Mellon's legacy, a passion for British art. [large print labels], Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, CT, 2007, v. 3, N5220 M552 +P381 2007, Mellon Shelf (YCBA)
  • Bibliograpic reference :: Peter D. Smith, Constable, Crown Publishers, New York, 1981, p. 49, NJ18 C74 S64 + (YCBA)
  • Bibliograpic reference :: Pierre Wat, Constable: entre ciel et terre, Herscher, Paris, 1994, pp. 42-3, NJ18 C74 W36 1994
  • Bibliograpic reference :: Robert Hoozee, L'opera completa di Constable, 98, Rizzoli, Milano, Italy, 1979, p. 118, no, 309, NJ18 C74 A12 +H66 (YCBA)
  • Bibliograpic reference :: William Vaughan, John Constable, Tate Publishing, London, 2002, pp. 58, 60, no. 52, NJ18 C74 V28 2002 (YCBA)
  • Bibliograpic reference :: William Vaughan, John Constable, Tate Publishing, London, 2015, pp. 76-78, fig. 52, NJ18.C74 V28 2015 (YCBA)
  • Dimension height :: 24.8cm
  • Dimension width :: 30.2cm
  • Exhibition :: 2016 Installation YCBA - 401
  • Exhibition :: An American's Passion for British Art - Paul Mellon's Legacy
  • Exhibition :: Canaletto to Constable: Paintings of Town and Country from the Yale Center for British Art
  • Exhibition :: Gentle, Rural and Sublime - English Landscape Paintings and Watercolors, 1750-1850
  • Exhibition :: John Constable (Tate)
  • Exhibition :: John Constable - A Selection of Paintings from the Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Mellon
  • Exhibition :: The Triumph of Landscape - Turner to Monet
  • Located in :: 401
  • Located in :: Bay21
  • Located in :: New Haven
  • Located in :: On view
  • Located in :: YCBA, 401, Bay21
  • Located in :: Yale Center for British Art
  • Object type :: painting
  • Subject Concept :: birds
  • Subject Concept :: blue
  • Subject Concept :: brush strokes
  • Subject Concept :: clouds
  • Subject Concept :: flat
  • Subject Concept :: gray
  • Subject Concept :: meteorology
  • Subject Concept :: motion
  • Subject Concept :: science
  • Subject Concept :: study (visual work)
  • Subject Concept :: texture
  • Subject Concept :: white
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  • ...
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  • Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection
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?:label
  • Cloud Study
?:type