Hudson River View (Sugar Factory at Yonkers)

Daniel Putnam Brinley (American, 1879–1963)
ca. 1915
MediumOil on canvas
Dimensions30 1/8 × 31 7/8 inches
CreditMuseum Purchase, 1995
Accession Number95.3.1

Puffs of blue curl climb lazily across Brinley’s Sugar Factory at Yonkers, a quintessential example of the Industrial Sublime in American art. The puff of smoke captured the imagination of the artists of the early 20th century and became a metaphor for power and technological progress. Factories, bridges, and smoke presented new icons for the Modern age, one that replaced the gnarled tree trunk symbol of the wilderness yet to be tamed, which featured in the Hudson River scenes painted by previous generations.