Sailboats on Reed's Lake

Date Created
circa 1930
16 in x 12 in
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Historical Context
By the 1930’s, when he painted Sailboats on Reeds Lake, Impressionist Mathias Alten enjoyed great success as an artist and teacher. Although the sexagenarian traveled and exhibited in New York and along the East Coast, he continued to paint prolifically in his home studio in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Reeds Lake, in neighboring East Grand Rapids, was one of the artist’s favorite locales, and he painted its crystal blue water and curving, forested shores more than 30 times. Alten began his artistic career as a young boy. Born in 1871, he spent much of his childhood in his native Germany, where from an early age he earned money by creating portraits of his village neighbors. Alten’s family moved to Michigan in 1889, settling on the west side of Grand Rapids with many other German immigrants.
Four white sailboats in water, trees in the distance. Row boats along the shore bottom right corner of image.
A Gift of the Stuart and Barbara Padnos Foundation

Painting Origin

Grand Rapids