Sunday, April 25, 2010

Lake George

In Henri's letters and journal, his must beautiful descriptions in my opinion are saved for nature. The following is a poignant piece translated from the original French concerning Lake George in New York state.

New York, 1852

"We headed towards Lake George, on the banks of which we stayed for a few days in Coldwell. This lake is the most beautiful sight that I have seen in America to this point and is especially charming because of its numerous islands. The lake is roughly twenty miles wide and at most a thirty miles long. The islands all have different aspects in regards to size, shape and foliage. Some have seasonal trees, some evergreens. They are surrounded by wild grass and bathe in waters even more limpid and transparent than that of the Hudson's. Add to this an admirable warmth of colors, a superb sunset and it will not be hard for you to believe me when I tell you that I felt touched by grace at the sight of such a magnificent spectacle. I think that I would have given a year or two of my life to reproduce it, but all this was only, as the Germans say a 'frommer münch.' I realized it was impossible to complete a little sepia drawing on location and completed it later. It is as far away from reality as we are from one another."

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