John Willard Raught

Hi everyone! I hope you’re all enjoying the summer.

For me, I’ve had the fantastic opportunity this summer to intern at the Everhart museum here in Scranton. While most of our work is remote and online, I recently had the chance to visit the museum in person and I was able to walk through the galleries. One artist who stood out to me, and whose art works I’ve always loved seeing at the Everhart, is John Willard Raught.

John Willard Raught was a local artist from Dunmore. He worked in the Impressionist style, which we know is a style that focused on capturing light and featured visible brush strokes. A talented artist, Raught attended the National Academy of Design in New York City and later the Académie Julian in Paris where he strengthened his artistic skills and progressed within Impressionism. 

John Willard Raught, Scranton Looking North
John Willard Raught, Scranton Looking North

As I walked through the gallery, there were three works that stood out to me in particular: Scranton Looking North, Harrison Avenue Bridge, and Path in Dunmore. All three works are characteristic of Impressionism with the specific focus of capturing light as it falls over beautiful scenes of nature or the city. All three works also pay close attention to how light accurately falls and shines on certain areas apart from those in the shade.

Looking at Scranton Looking North, we see the rocks in the bottom left appear in darker tones as they lay in the shade, while the sunlight peaks in on the grass in the foreground and then shines all over the city. In Harrison Avenue Bridge, similar detail and focus on light, color, and tones are again seen in multiple aspects of the painting. It’s as if we are seeing the moment the sun begins to set. As light shines on the top of the tree there are lighter greens compared to the darker greens at the bottom where the tree is covered by the bridge. Looking closely, Raught highlights the very top lines of the bridge where light falls, and of course we can see all of the sun shining over the city. In Path in Dunmore, we really get to see the use of the different tones of green in nature to emphasize where light is shining and the amount that comes through. The darkest greens are in the front and progressively get softer and lighter further into the painting where the sunlight falls. Throughout all three artworks, John Willard Raught paints with the visible brush strokes characteristic of Impressionism. It is with these dashes of paint that he was able to blend, add, and build the colors and tones in these bright and lively paintings. 

I encourage you to take a trip to the Everhart and see John Willard Raught’s paintings as well as see many of the other works that spotlight the local area. 

Have a great week!

Source: Everhart Museum

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