A Landscape and River Scene
About the work
In a theatrically moonlit scene a figure walks along a river path, his small dog following behind. Occupying the middle distance is a house elevated on a small hill, its gables and chimneys outlined clearly against the evening sky. The intense whiteness of the moon’s glow radiates across the landscape, creating atmospheric glints on the surrounding clouds and the calm stillness of the river.As a landscape painter of mainly moonlight scenes such as this one, Abraham Pether established a firm reputation and became famously known as ‘Moonlight Pether’. His father Henry Pether had also previously painted moonlit or dusk landscapes.
About the artist
Abraham Pether, a cousin of the painter William Pether, was born at Chichester and as a child showed a talent for music. However, he later became a pupil of the painter George Smith. His works mainly depict river and mountain scenery, often with classical buildings, although it was his popular moonlit views that inspired the nickname ‘Moonlight Pether’. He exhibited frequently at the Royal Academy and Free Society of Artists. Despite some success Pether was never able to do more than provide for the basic needs of his wife and children. Towards the end of his life he was incapacitated by disease. The Artist’s Benevolent Fund faced severe criticism for not supporting his family after the artist’s death, despite their acute poverty.
Abraham Pether (1756 - 1812)
- A Landscape and River Scene
- Oil on canvas
- height: 43.50 cm, width: 39.00 cm
- Purchased from Puttick & Simpson, November 1949
- GAC number