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Cloud Study

Oil painting of clouds

John Constable (1776–1837)
Cloud Study, ca. 1822
Oil on paper, laid down on board
11 1/2 x 19 in. (29.2 x 48.3 cm)
Bequest of Henrietta E. S. Lockwood in memory of her father and mother, Ellery Sedgwick and Mabel Cabot Sedgwick, 2000

This work belongs to a large series of oil studies in which Constable recorded the sky at various times of day and under different meteorological conditions. Working from direct observation in the open air, he captures the movement of the clouds and shifting light. In this study, downward strokes suggest the fall of rain from a dark cloud.