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The Luminist Movement (1850-1875)

Luminism, late 19th-century painting style emphasizing a unique clarity of light.
It was characteristic of the works of a group of independent American painters who were directly influenced by the Hudson River school of painting.
The term, however, was not coined until 1954 by John Baur, director of the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York City.
The most important painters in the luminist style were John Frederick Kensett, Fitz Hugh Lane, and Martin Johnson Heade; the group also included George Tirrell, Henry Walton, and J.W. Hill.

Paintings by the luminists are almost always landscapes or seascapes, particularly the latter, and are distinguished by a smooth, slick finish; cold, clear colors; and meticulously detailed objects, modeled by rays of light.
In these paintings, the sky usually occupies about one-half of the composition, which is often in the format of a long rectangle. The works often show a geometric organization, with the edges of specific objects aligned parallel to the canvas edges.

Although it was not an organized movement, later landscapists such as George Loring Brown and Robert S. Duncanson adopted certain characteristics of the luminists and therefore are sometimes classified with them.
Many untrained, or naive, painters, especially those of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, were influenced by elements of luminism such as its hard linearism, depth, and clear modeling. / Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc.

From TaTe


Luminism means roughly, the painting of light and is applied specifically to the American landscape painters of the Hudson River school from about 1830–70.
Many of the paintings produced by the Hudson River school were dominated by intense and often dramatic light effects.

In British art a form of luminism underlies James Abbott McNeill Whistler's 'Nocturnes'.
The term is also sometimes applied to neo-impressionist paintings in which the divisionist technique leads to a marked all over luminosity.

Il Luminismo è una forma di Impressionismo o di neo-Impressionismo in pittura, che dà una importanza fondamentale alla luce ed ai suoi effetti.
Il termine fu creato per definire lo stile del pittore belga Émile Claus and Théo van Rysselberghe e degli artisti che ne seguirono le orme: Évariste Carpentier, Jenny Montigny, Anna de Weert, Georges Morren, Gustave De Smet, Frits van den Berghe, Didier Groffier, l'americano Fitz Henry Lane ed altri ancora.

Esso indica, peraltro, anche la forma che ssunse il Divisionismo, ed in particolare il Puntinismo, nei pittori olandesi come Jan Toorop, Jan Stuijters e Piet Mondrian.

In realtà le due forme pittoriche hanno poco in comune. L'opera di Émile Claus è molto vicina a quella dei grandi Impressionisti francesi, in particolare a Claude Monet, mentre il Luminismo olandese, caratterizzato dall'uso di una vasta gamma di tinte, è assai più vicino al Fauvismo.

Luminist painter at Tutt'Art@

Anna De Weert (1867-1950) | Luminist painter
Emile Claus | Luminist / Genre painter
Thomas Moran (1837-1926) | Luminist painter
Lluís Ribas, 1949 | Luminist painter
Evariste Carpentier | Genre / Luminist painter
Brent Cotton, 1972 | Tonalist/Luminist painter