Boathouse at Ingleneuk by Frederic Remington

Name: Boathouse at Ingleneuk | Artist: Frederic Remington Media: Oil on academy board | Year(s): ca. 1903 - 1907
Frederic Remington | Boathouse at Ingleneuk | ca. 1903 - 1907 | Oil on academy board | Frederic Remington Art Museum, Ogdensburg, NY

About the Work

After years of summering on Lake Champlain and Cranberry Lake in the Adirondacks, Frederic and Eva Remington purchased a small island in the Thousand Islands region of the St. Lawrence River in 1900. Ingleneuk, a "dandy lumbered island" in Remington's words, was located in Chippewa Bay, upriver from the artist's boyhood home in Ogdensburg, New York. A 1908 newspaper article described the artist's isle as charming and densely covered with pine, birch, beech, and cedar trees. Remington left nature as he found it, but this was no "bark camp." Ingleneuk's amenities included a roomy cottage (its top visible behind the trees), two docks, a boathouse, artist's studio, and tennis court.

The Remingtons spent summer months at Ingleneuk, setting out from their New Rochelle, New York home, after hearing that the St. Lawrence River ice had broken up: "All our thoughts and doings are now for the island. I do not know what we would do without that island this time of year," declares a Remington diary entry. Although Remington dubbed Ingleneuk "a Temple of Rest," he was rarely inactive. He worked on Western paintings he had brought with him, sketched the local landscape, fished, swam, and canoed. An avid canoeist, Remington proclaimed in 1896 that canoeing is "my religion." He kept his top-of-the-line Rushton canoes, which were constructed in his birthplace, Canton, New York, in the boathouse. He also owned a motorboat, but disdained it as unnatural, compared to a canoe.

Boathouse at Ingleneuk is one of the artist's most impressionistic compositions. Painted en plein air [outdoors], its lively brushwork, loosely defined forms, and feeling of being on the water capture the immediacy of the moment and, in his words, "to take some of the light and water home with me to look at this winter."