Bowdoin College Museum of Art

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Fitz Henry (Hugh) Lane (Nathaniel Rogers Lane) (1804 - 1865); Mary Blood Mellen (5/13/1819 - 2/11/1886, Taunton, Massachusetts)


Gloucester Harbor

Creation Date

ca. 1870


19th century


24 3/16 in. x 36 1/8 in. (61.44 cm x 91.76 cm)

Object Type


Creation Place

North America, United States, Massachusetts

Medium and Support

oil on canvas

Credit Line

Gift of Mrs. Hope P. Gilmor


Public Domain

Accession Number

Mary Blood Mellen was the adept student and friend of the painter Fitz Henry Lane (1804–1865). After moving to Gloucester, Massachusetts with her husband, Universalist minister Charles W. Mellen, in the 1840s, Mary Blood Mellen worked with Lane in his studio in the 1850s. She practiced her skill by copying Lane’s compositions and contributing as a studio assistant to many of his canvases. Recently, it has been discovered that their artistic collaborations were even more extensive than previously understood, resulting in an increase in the number of paintings identified as Mellen’s work. In Gloucester Harbor, also referred to as Laying Nets, Mellen utilized precise brushstrokes to capture natural atmospheric lighting effects, depicting the calm reflection off the water while the sun rises across the Harbor.

Keywords: American art   Image of Massachusetts   boat   buoy   cloud   figurative   harbor   Image of Gloucester   Image of Massachusetts   industry   Luminism   man   maritime painting   Re-attribution   sail   seascape   landscape (representation)   water   whaling ship  

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