The Dunes embodies the artist’s gift for rendering atmosphere, evidenced by his brilliant interpretation of the grandiose clouds and rolling dunes. Browne’s use of strong outlines and hatched brushstrokes gives the large-scale painting a sense of energy and vitality, his quick, decisive marks imbuing movement throughout the canvas.
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Browne was an integral part of the Provincetown community. He was a frequent exhibitor and painting juror at the Provincetown Art Association, and in 1916 helped establish the Beachcombers, a social club renowned for their theatrical skits and costume balls. He was also a member of many arts organizations beyond the Cape, including the National Arts Club, the American Water Color Society, the Allied Artists of America, and the Salmagundi Club. He became a full National Academician in 1927, and exhibited nationally and internationally, including at the Boston Art Club, the National Academy of Design, the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, the Corcoran Gallery in Washington, DC, and the Paris Salon. His work can be found in the permanent collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Wadsworth Athenaeum in Hartford, Connecticut, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, and the Milwaukee Art Museum, among other venerable institutions.
Wally Findlay Galleries, New York, until 1981
To private collection, Belvedere, California, now Waltham, Massachusetts, April 1981 to present
- (handwritten in marker in upper left part of canvas wrapped around stretcher) B82955
- (handwritten in black on horizontal crossbar) 146–5629
- (handwritten in pencil on horizontal crossbar) The Dunes
- (handwritten in black on left stretcher) 4607–139
- (handwritten in black on right stretcher) G. E. Brown (sic) THE DUNES
- (handwritten in newer ink on right stretcher) 2419
- Sticker: Founded in 1870 / WALLY / FINDLAY / GALLERIES / NEW YORK – PARIS / CHICAGO – PALM BEACH / BEVERLY HILLS
- Sticker on frame (partially rubbed off): COE KERR GALLERY, INC / 49 EAST 82nd STREET / NEW YORK, N.Y. 10028 / ARTIST (handwritten, faded) George Elmer Browne / TITLE (handwritten, partially faded) “The Dunes” / MEDIUM (handwritten, partially faded) Oil / (handwritten, faded) #43
- (unidentified exhibition label tacked in upper right corner) Artist: [GE] BROWNE / Address: (illegible) / Title: The D—(torn)
- (likely) 103rd Annual Exhibition, National Academy of Design, March 21 – April 8, 1928, no. 53 The Dunes
- (possibly) Boston Art Club, unknown date (based on the similarity of the unidentified label above to Boston Art Club labels)