Fitz Hugh Lane USA
12-19-1804 Gloucester, USA – 8-14-1865 Gloucester, USABack to Artist IndexView Artists Paintings
Fitz Hugh Lane was christened Nathaniel Rogers Lane and would remain known as such until he was 27. The state of Massachusetts officially granted Lane's own formal request to change his name from Nathaniel Rogers to Fitz Henry Lane aka Fitz Hugh Lane, the reasons are still very unclear.
From the time of his birth, Fitz Hugh Lane would be exposed to the sea and maritime life—a factor that obviously had a great impact his later choice of subject matter. It is often speculated that Lane would most likely have pursued some seafaring career, or become a sail-maker like his father, instead of an artist, had it not been for a lifelong handicap Lane developed as a child. Lane at the age of eighteen months caused the paralysis of the legs from which Lane would never recover.
Lane acquired art lessons by way of his employment at Pendleton's Lithography shop in Boston, which lasted from 1832 to 1847. With the refinement and development of his artistic skills acquired during his years working as a lithographer, Lane was able to successfully produce marine paintings of high quality.
Fitz Hugh Lane's first-known and recorded work, a watercolor titled The Burning of the Packet Ship "Boston," executed in 1830.
At the time when Lane began his employment at Pendleton's, it was common practice for aspiring American artists—especially those who, like Lane, could not afford a more formal education in the arts by traveling to Europe or by attending one of the prestigious American art academies.
Beginning in the early 1840s Fitz Hugh Lane would declare himself publicly to be a marine painter while simultaneously continuing his career as a lithographer. He quickly attained an eager and enthusiastic patronage from several of the leading merchants and mariners in Boston, New York, and his native Gloucester.
As one of the styles of landscape painting to emerge in the nineteenth century, Luminism embraced the contemporary preoccupation with nature as a manifestation of God's grand plan. It was luminism more than any other of the schools that succeeded in imbuing an objective study of nature with a depth of feeling.
A contemporary of the Hudson River School, he enjoyed a reputation as America's premier painter of marine subjects during his lifetime. His work can now command at auction prices ranging as high as $5.0 million dollars.
Art Movement: Luminism
Influenced: Mary Mellen, Benjamin Champney, William Bradford