William Merritt Chase

Shinnecock Hills from Canoe Place, Long Island

Oil 27.25 inch w x 17.5 inch h

local history:
Shinnecock Canal Canoe Place 
  40°53′15″N 72°30′5″Whome_index.html

The Canal opened to maritime use for fisherman and traders in 1892; quickly evolving as a renowned tourist destination (via the LIRR,) for water-related recreational activities on sparkling blue waters, fine sand beaches and rolling hills.

Photography was accessible for some; Drawing remained  the medium for sketches; painting the dominant art form. The years when plein air painter William Merritt Chase lived nearby on Canoe Place Road in Shinnecock Hills (1891-1916); while directing the Shinnecock Summer School of Painting.

Chase’s art practice was interwoven with his life. His sketches were composed of the bay shores, beaches, dunes and hills he walked, fished and bathed with family and friends.  His paintings of the Canal picture “the gateway” to his community.

“William Merritt Chase's vivid depictions of the Shinnecock Hills have been repeatedly acknowledged as some of the finest accomplishments of American Impressionism.”  read more....

Canoe Place derives from the Native American word  “Niamuck” that describes the portage where Shinnecock Nation walked their canoes across “Canoe Place Pond”. At this narrowing point of land between the Shinnecock and Peconic Bays, the Pond was dredged: reshaped into the Shinnecock Canal (1892) that links two great Bays.

Designated a historic landmark by New York State; noted by a plaque from the William G. Pomeroy Foundation (2013). Locks were added (1919) to accommodate differences of tidal elevations between the bays.

copyright2015 Hope Sandrow