SOLD Sunset, Amagansett, 1905

by Thomas Moran (1837–1926)
Oil on canvas
30½ x 40½ inches
Monogrammed and dated lower right: TMoran 1905



Private collection, Akron, Ohio, 1970s

Sale, The Coeur d’Alene Art Auction, Reno, Nevada, July 26, 2008, lot 36, from above

Michael Altman Fine Art & Advisory Services, New York, New York

Private collection, acquired from above, 2009

Sale, Sotheby’s, New York, New York, November 18, 2015, lot 79, from above


Gagosian, London, England, American Pastoral, January 23–March 14, 2020

Questroyal Fine Art, LLC, New York, New York, The American Masters, October 7–December 30, 2021


Important American Paintings, Volume XXII: The American Masters (New York: Questroyal Fine Art, LLC, 2021), n.p.

Related Works

A Midsummer Day, East Hampton, Long Island, 1903, oil on canvas board, 13⅓ x 19 inches; Guild Hall Museum, East Hampton, New York

A Glimpse of the Sea, Amagansett, 1904, oil on canvas; Fort Wayne Museum of Art, Fort Wayne, Indiana

The Old Bridge Over Hook Pond, East Hampton, Long Island, 1907, oil on canvas, 20½ x 30¼ inches; High Museum of Art, Atlanta, Georgia

A Glimpse of Long Island Sound from Montauk, 1907, oil on canvas, 31 x 41½ inches; Lauren Rogers Museum of Art, Laurel, Mississippi

Amagansett, pencil sketch; The East Hampton Library, East Hampton, New York

Thomas Moran with his daughter, Ruth, at the studio in East Hampton, photograph; The East Hampton Library, East Hampton, New York

Note: This painting will be included in the forthcoming catalogue raisonné of the artist’s work by Stephen L. Good and Phyllis Braff.

Amagansett, Long Island was a frequent subject of Moran’s. He first visited the nearby area in 1878 on a sketching trip hosted by the Tile Club and was “enchanted by the village [of adjacent East Hampton] and the surrounding countryside.”[1] The artist built a studio in East Hampton in 1884, and it became his permanent summer home[2] (as the first studio established in East Hampton, Moran helped create an artist’s colony there; today the Thomas & Mary Nimmo Moran Studio is a National Historic Landmark).[3]

According to scholar Phyllis Braff, Moran found the serene pastoral setting of Amagansett very picturesque, and it recalled a certain appreciation for the past, in an era of increasing industrial development.[4] He sketched at Amagansett, a place with “dunes and its wide rolling stretches of sand and beach grass, where the blossoms of wild plum and shadbush tossed like mists in the spring.”[5] Moran’s reputation for luminous paintings can be partially linked to his work in Amagansett; bordered on one side by the Atlantic Ocean and by Gardiner’s Bay and Accabonac Harbor on the other, depicting the terrain there allowed him to add dramatic water reflections to “compositions with large, unbroken skies.”[6] As a younger artist he studied the skies of Constable and Turner in London and kept his sketches from that period in his Long Island studio. According to Braff, the present work, “with its pink, white and golden clouds ranging from celebratory to somber,” is one of several Long Island paintings from this time that demonstrate Moran’s interest in natural phenomena, such as observations of time of day and the seasons, often implying symbolic interpretation for these themes.[7]

The importance of his Long Island works was evident during his lifetime, as was his productivity while painting there. A writer for the East Hampton Star commented in December 1895,

Among the notable pictures which have been exhibited in New York recently…are a group of characteristic canvasses by Thomas Moran. Several East Hampton landscapes, with their quiet pools, luxuriant foliage and distant windmills form a pleasant contrast to the brilliantly colored scenes of Colorado canons and Venetians palaces. All of Moran’s pictures are characterized by brilliant technical qualities and a wealth of color which make them notable in any collection.[8]

The following summer, Moran noted that after several months spent in his East Hampton studio, he did the “very best work of his life” and from the perspective of the East Hampton Star writer doing that feature “it seemed to the reporter impossible that humans hands could make more beautiful pictures.”[9]

[1] Nancy K. Anderson, Thomas Moran (Washington: National Gallery of Art, 1997), 127. [2] Thurman Wilkins, Thomas Moran: Artist of the Mountains (Norman, OK: University of Oklahoma Press, 1966), 176. [3] “Thomas & Mary Nimmo Moran Studio, ca. 1884,” East Hampton Historical Society, accessed January 21, 2022, [4] Auction note by Phyllis Braff, Sotheby’s, New York, New York, November 18, 2015, lot 79 [5] Thurman Wilkins, Thomas Moran: Artist of the Mountains, 180. [6] Auction note by Phyllis Braff [7] Ibid. [8] Anderson, Thomas Moran, 260-261. [9] Ibid., 261.

Artist Biography

Hudson River School painter famous for landscapes of the American West

By Alexandra A. Jopp

A master of composition and inspired by J.W.M Turner and Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot, Thomas Moran became known for monumental romantic landscapes of the American West and his efforts in establishing the first national park at Yellowstone.

I. Biography
II. Chronology
III. Collections
IV. Exhibitions
V. Memberships
VI. Notes

Read More

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