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Henry Rankin Poore
Lyme Art Colony
In Lyme: 1900-1935
During his lifetime, Henry Rankin Poore achieved a reputation not only as a painter, but as an art instructor, lecturer, and writer on traditional painting practices. Born in Newark, New Jersey, Poore studied at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, the National Academy in New York, and finally with Luminais and Bouguereau in Paris for two and a half years in the early 1880s. In 1889 Poore was elected an associate member of the Nataional Academy of Design and shortly thereafter went abroad again to further his studies in France and England.
By the late 1890s Poore had established himslf as a leading painter of animals, and, to a lesser extent, of portraits, historical subjects, and winter landscapes. He became a devotee of fox hunting, a recurring subject in his writing and painting. Although his earlypaintings were true to the Barbizon tradition both in style and subject, his later canvases are described as "conservative Impressionism" featuring soft, early morning light of haze with a restful and dream-like atmosphere. Dedicated to painting en plein air under all weather conditions, Poore constructed an ox-drawn movable studio in the form of a small room which was fully equipped.
In addition to teaching at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts and during summers in Old Lyme, Poore kept up a busy schedule of exhibitions, lectures, and writing. He received numerous medals at the World Expositions. Through much of his life he advocated and defended the use of harmonious colors and formal rules of composition and was an outspoken opponent of modernism.