Charles Ephraim Burchfield

American, 1893-1967

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Sun and Rocks, 1918-1950

Artwork Details

Collection Highlight


watercolor and gouache on paper


sheet: 40 x 56 inches (101.6 x 142.24 cm); framed: 45 5/8 x 61 5/8 inches (115.89 x 156.53 cm)

Collection Buffalo AKG Art Museum


Room of Contemporary Art Fund, 1953

Accession ID


Charles Burchfield utilized his favored medium of watercolor to develop an expressive visual iconography that reflects his profound respect for nature. His depictions of the landscape are often referred to as transcendental, a quality he believed was present in the natural world and led him to approach his work with the idea that the mysteries of nature could help him reveal his inner emotions. Sun and Rocks explores the theme of apocalyptic beauty in a scene Burchfield describes thus: “Shining from the deep blue cavernous sky, the spring sun—our great day-time star—floods the scene with brilliant light that will heal the wounds of earth and bring forth new life."

Label from Anselm Kiefer: Beyond Landscape, November 17, 2013–October 5, 2014