Painting during a time when landscapes of the Hudson River School decreased in popularity, American artist Hal Robinson took up the paint brush to create works in the style of contemporaries John Francis Murphy and Bruce Crane. Significantly, Robinson’s paintings are rooted in naturalism, yet give way to modern modes of expression in their dramatic, dynamic brushstrokes, and evocation of mood. This adopted style may have been inspired by fellow artists Robinson possibly met during his time at the painter’s colony at Old Lyme. The colony was home to a number of up-and-coming artists, such as impressionist painter Childe Hassam, John Henry Twatchman, William Chadwick, Frank Bicknell, and Willard Leroy Metcalf, all of who painted in a less representational manner than their nineteenth-century predecessors. Robinson fit well within this group, producing paintings whose titles echo their tonalist and impressionistic aims: After a Spring Rain, After the October Storm, and The Last Glow. Along with his colleagues, Robinson exhibited works at the National Academy of Design and the Corcoran Gallery. Today, his work can be seen at the Cigna Museum and Art Collection, Philadelphia.
Peter Hastings Falk, ed., The Annual Exhibition Record of the National Academy of Design, 1901 – 1950 (Madison, CT: Sound View Press, 1990), 442.
Peter Hastings Falk, ed., Who Was Who in American Art 1564-1975: 400 Years of Artists in
America (Madison, CT: Sound View Press, 1999).
Michael Preston Worley, “Hal Robinson,” accessed 1 June 2008, www.askart.com.