Marsden Hartley – Artwork & Bio of the American Painter

Marsden Hartley was an American Painter born on 4 January 1877 in Lewiston, Maine. Hartley started studying art after moving to Ohio in 1893, taking classes locally, and attending the Cleveland School of Art. Hartley received a five-year study sponsorship in New York, under William Merrit Chase and at the National Academy of Design. He returned to his hometown after his studies and taught painting.

In 1909, back in New York, Hartley met Alfred Stieglitz, who gave him his first solo exhibition. Throughout his career, Hartley frequently traveled to European cities, sometimes relocating there. The influences of his many travels are evident in his landscapes. Hartley returned to Maine during his later years and continued to paint despite his failing health. He died on 2 September 1943 in Ellsworth, Maine.

What was Marsden Hartley Known For?

Marsden Hartley was known for painting abstractions using simplified forms, bold and bright colors, and a unique application of brushstrokes. Hartley’s subject matter varied from landscapes to genre scenes, which showed keen attention to detail. During his last years, Marsden focused on portraiture, using his famed color and brushstroke application.

Who was Marsden Hartley Influenced By?

Pablo Picasso, Albert Pinkham Ryder, and the Der Blaue Reiter influenced different phases of  Marsden Hartley’s art creation. While at the Academy, Hartley met Ryder, the abstract painter, who would become one of the first influences on his style. Subsequently, Hartley encountered Picasso’s works in Europe, which he stated: “seemed to burn my head off.”

What Art Movement was Marsden Hartley Associated With?

Marsden Hartley was associated with the Dada art movement. However, the portraits he created later in his career showcase Realism techniques.

Marsden Hartley Artwork

Hartley’s works have influenced European modernism and its associated artists immensely. Below are some of them


Birds of the Bagaduce

Eight Bells Folly, Memorial to Hart Crane

Fisherman’s Last Supper

Gardener’s Gloves and Shears

Hall of the Mountain King

Landscape, New Mexico

Large Country Petrified Sand Hills


Pueblo Mountain

Purple Mountainsen, Vence


Smelt Brook Falls

Storm Clouds, Maine

Sustained Comedy

The Ice Hole

Valley Road



All Marsden Hartley Artwork on Artchive

Artwork Name Year Medium
Portrait of a German Officer 1914 Oil on Canvas
New Mexico Recollections No. 12 1922-23 Oil on Canvas
New England Sea View - Fish House 1934 Oil on board
Carnelian Country 1932 Oil on cardboard
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