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The Art of JAMA |

February Thaw Charles Burchfield

Jeanette M. Smith, MD
JAMA. 2014;311(8):780-781. doi:10.1001/jama.2013.279348.
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It’s around February in northern climes when the winter doldrums set in. Stark landscapes and impromptu acrobatics on ice intensify longings for the sight of new green leaves and the whisper of a warm breeze. A consciousness of weather was a recurring concept in paintings by Charles Burchfield (1893-1967), who was highly attuned to nature’s rhythms. His watercolors can summon the sounds, smells, and earthy ambience of the natural world, and his trademark touch of gothic whimsy delights the psyche.

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Charles Burchfield (1893-1967), February Thaw, 1920, American. Watercolor. 45.6 × 71 cm. Courtesy of the Brooklyn Museum (http://www.brooklynmuseum.org/home.php), Brooklyn, New York; John B. Woodward Memorial Fund, 21.104.



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