William Louis Sonntag (1822-1900), The River Valley. Oil on canvas, 26 x 40 inches. Signed lower right. Original period frame.
William Louis Sonntag (1822-1900) William Louis Sonntag was born in East Liberty, Pennsylvania (near Pittsburgh), in 1822 and died in New York City in 1900. He is considered an 19th century landscape painter associated with the Hudson River School. In 1840, Sonntag moved to Cincinnati to study with Godfrey Frankelstein at the Cincinnati Academy of Fine Art. He maintained his studio there from the mid 1840's to the 1850's. He made regular painting trips to the Ohio River Valley and into the mountains of Virginia and Kentucky. Landscape painter Thomas Cole influences the paintings of this period.
Sonntag made his first trip to Europe in 1853 and returned in 1855 to study in Florence. Upon his return to the United States, he established his studio in New York City.
He became an associate member to the National Academy of Design in 1861. Sonntag exhibited at the Academy on a regular basis for over forty years.
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