Image rights: Courtesy of The Phillips Collection
About William Lathrop
After long struggle as a young artist, William Lathrop won the Evans Prize at the American Watercolor Society in 1896, a success that gained his reputation as a master watercolorist and Tonalist painter of the first rank. Lathrop was a skilled draftsman and versatile handler of paint; his early work was relatively restrained, depicting farm landscapes near his home in New Hope on the Delaware River. Over time, Lathrop’s paint handling grew bolder and more exuberant, teasing out the essential forms of a composition into pleasing patterns, something he learned from James Abbot McNeill Whistler. He explored Impressionism in his mature work, while retaining a tonal palette in his feel for the power of large landscape forms. Lathrop drowned while indulging his passion for sailing, caught in the hurricane of 1938 on Long Island Sound.