Rocky Mountain Majesty

The Paintings of Charles Partridge Adams
Dec 16, 2012–Sep 8, 2013

Charles Partridge Adams, An Autumn Hillside Sunset, Edge of Middle Park, Colorado, about 1890. Oil paint on canvas. Lent by Julie and Rob Lewis.

Charles Partridge Adams, In the Vicinity of Ouray, date not known. Oil paint on canvas. Collection of Bruce and Dorothy Dines.

Charles Partridge Adams, Longs Peak from Estes Park, Colo., 1897. Oil paint on canvas. Lent by William Moore.

Charles Partridge Adams, Sunrise on the Mountains at the Head of Moraine Park, Near Estes Park, about 1920. Oil paint on canvas. Gift of Philip, Albert and Charles P. Adams Jr., sons of the late Charles Partridge Adams, CU Art Museum, University of Colorado Boulder, 86.1825.

Charles Partridge Adams, Sunset in Colorado, about 1900. Oil paint on canvas. Denver Art Museum, Museum Exchange with Lemon Saks, 1969.53.

Charles Partridge Adams, Winter Scene, 1898. Watercolor. Collection of Bruce and Dorothy Dines.

Charles Partridge Adams, Untitled (Sangre de Christo Mountains), date not known. Oil paint on canvas. Collection of Bruce and Dorothy Dines.

Charles Partridge Adams, After the Autumn Snows, Mtns Near Trout Lake, Colo. Near Telluride, date not known. Oil paint on canvas. Collection of Bruce and Dorothy Dines.

Charles Partridge Adams, Platte River Sunset, date not known. Oil paint on canvas. Dusty and Kathy Loo Historical Colorado Art Collection.

Charles Partridge Adams, Clearing Storm Over Longs Peak, date not known. Oil paint on canvas. Dusty and Kathy Loo Historical Colorado Art Collection.

Charles Partridge Adams, In the Colorado Mountains, 1898. Watercolor. Collection of Chuck and Charla Rudolph.

Charles Partridge Adams, Sunset Near Denver. Watercolor.

Charles Partridge Adams, Mount Sneffels, San Juan Colorado, date not known. Oil paint on canvas. Private collection, Colorado, represented by Saks Galleries.

Charles Partridge Adams, Rabbit Brush, date not known. Oil paint on canvas. Private collection, Colorado, courtesy of the Saks Galleries, Denver.

Charles Partridge Adams, Moraine Park, c. 1900. Oil paint on canvas. Denver Art Museum, Funds from various donors by exchange, 1996.8

Charles Partridge Adams, Gathering Storm Near the San Juan Mountains, date not known. Oil paint on canvas. Private Collection, Colorado, represented by Saks Galleries.

about

Closed: December 16, 2012–Sep 8, 2013
Hamilton Building - Level 2
Included in general admission

Charles Partridge Adams was a Colorado landscape painter active during the late 1800s and early 1900s. Rocky Mountain Majesty: The Paintings of Charles Partridge Adams marks the first time that Adams’ paintings will be displayed together at a major art museum; and the Denver Art Museum will be the sole venue for this important exhibition that highlights his greatest paintings of Colorado.

Adams became one of the finest Colorado artists and is best known for his paintings of Longs Peak near Estes Park and other mountain ranges in Colorado. He was a highly prolific painter who created more than a 1,000 paintings during his lifetime. The DAM will exhibit 33 of the very best of his oil and watercolor paintings depicting Colorado and will show the diversity of Adams’ oeuvre, which includes such styles as realism, tonalism and impressionism. Rocky Mountain Majesty also will feature two of the museum’s own paintings, Moraine Park and Sunset in Colorado, alongside loans from lenders across Colorado.

Born in Massachusetts, Adams moved to Colorado as a teenager for the arid climate, hoping to save his younger sister from tuberculosis. He remained in Colorado and began his painting career by befriending local artists who helped him to develop his working method and style. Adams, a mostly self-taught artist, learned his craft by interacting with others in the field, practicing techniques and experimenting with different styles.

His early attempts yielded mostly realistic depictions that had almost no suggestions of impressionism. However, by the late 1890s–early 1910s, he established his signature style that was based on impressionism with an added colorful touch. He then moved on to even more dramatic brushwork, a livelier palette and more impasto. He began neglecting subject details, a characterizing trait of impressionism. His paintings express a deeply individual and poetic reaction to the Colorado landscapes, with stunning understanding of the varying effects of light and air.

Rocky Mountain Majesty: The Paintings of Charles Partridge Adams will be on view through September 8, 2013.

More online

  • Listen to a Colorado Matters interview (8 minutes) about Adams moving to Colorado in the 1870s, when he was 18, and teaching himself to paint. Thomas Brent Smith, director and curator at the DAM's Petrie Institute of Western American Art, talks with Colorado Public Radio's Ryan Warner.
  • Explore our Colorado Landscapes board on Pinterest.

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