View of the Hudson Highlands with Woman Painting
John Douglas focuses our attention with a figure who not only admires the river and surrounding mountains, but has come prepared to record them. The panorama in front of her is the iconic view across Newburgh Bay to the “Wind Gate.”
South from here to Haverstraw Bay, the Hudson cuts a narrow, winding path between mountainous terrain. Bends in the channel at the north and south of these bays mean that there are vantage points on the west bank of the Hudson where one can look straight up or down the river. Both of these spots were favorites of the Hudson River School painters, travel writers, and tourists who ventured out with guidebooks in hand. One wonders if Douglas, who lived about 10 miles north of the spot, actually had a painting companion or if the figure is an artistic invention.