Alfred Thompson Bricher 
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Boats Along the Shore, c. 1885-90

Alfred Thompson Bricher, a native of Portsmouth, New Hampshire, was a powerful contributor to American landscape painting in the wake of the Civil War. Although he spent the heart of his working life in New York, his best paintings are elegant landscapes and views of the New England coast. His early work was informed by an enthusiasm for Kensett, but, after his marriage in 1868 and move to New York shortly thereafter, the painter developed a mature style that contemporary critics described as “in the French manner,” suggesting the influence of Courbet. (As quoted in Alfred Thompson Bricher by Jeffrey Brown, 1973) No journals survive, and it is unknown whether he went abroad, but certainly the painter had an eye on the shifting tastes of the day, and as well as a hand in their change. He retained from Kensett a spare composition, but, especially during the 1870s, his newfound voice was among the chorus of novelty in the last quarter of the 19th century.