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The painting itself is nearly six feet wide and eight feet tall. It is made using the oil on canvas method and shows a lot of detail, especially in the rocks and trees. The original painting hangs in the St Johnsbury Athenaeum, although many other prints and reproductions are available today.
The Yosemite Valley was discovered by non-indigenous people only about 150 years ago during the California Gold Rush. Soon after, people started coming in droves to Yosemite Valley in hopes of seeing its famous features, including the spectacular waterfalls and granite domes.
Bierstadt is noted for paintings that featured epic American landscapes with heroic figures. To create the Domes of the Yosemite, he likely chose a time when no large groups of people were in the valley (such as weekends) to minimise the chance that anyone would get in his way. Although his work is romanticised, it was an excellent piece of the expressionist art movement because he used light and colour to evoke emotions. This technique has been adopted throughout history up until now.
In the painting, there is a large amount of vegetation with a little bit of nature's architecture mixed in. Many layers surround these tall objects; each tier has its unique colour scheme, creating variety within the piece. Viewers can also see steam rising from the ground of the painting. The main focus is on the magnificence of Yosemite. The sky is vaguely blue with large white clouds.
Bierstadt spent a great deal of time with Native Americans and studied their customs. His paintings were often romanticized depictions of nature, which is the case with this painting. The Domes of the Yosemite is now one of California's most recognisable paintings. Albert Bierstadt was a famous 19th-century landscape painter. During his lifetime, he painted over 300 paintings and was known as "the Painter of the Hudson River". Today, the Domes of the Yosemite is one of his most popular works and undoubtedly his best-known painting of Yosemite National Park. He made all these nature paintings based on sketches that he had made while he was travelling in the Rocky Mountains.
According to art analysts, the painting depicts some of the largest and most admired natural wonders in the world. Albert painted it in an exciting scale and striking colours that viewers can certainly enjoy. His other famous nature paintings include North Fork of Platte Nebraska, The Rocky Mountains, Lander's Peak, Among the Sierra Nevada Mountains California, The Great Trees Mariposa Grove California, Emerald Sea, and The Last of the Buffalo. To date, Albert's Domes of the Yosemite painting remains to be the centrepiece of St. Johnsbury Athenaeum’s artwork collection. It brings visitors and art enthusiasts from all over the country, and the world at large.