Note on the Image

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M6.    South Street Seaport by twilight, circa 1885

          ( Influence of John Stobart as his follower)

The South Street Seaport is a historic area in the New York City borough of Manhattan, centered where Fulton Street meets the East River.

The first pier in the area appeared in 1625, when the Dutch West India Company founded an outpost here. With the influx of the first settlers, the area was quickly developed.

On the night of December 17, 1835 in the city there was a large fire, which destroyed 17 blocks. Many buildings in the South Street Seaport burned to the ground. Nevertheless, by the 1840s, the port recovered, and by 1850, it reached its heyday.

At its peak, there were many commercial enterprises, institutions, ship-chandlers, workshops, boarding houses, saloons and brothels. However, by the 1880s, the port began to be depleted of resources, space for the development of these businesses was diminishing, and the port became too shallow for newer ships.

Through the use of strong diagonals the eye leads clouds, the top of the buildings, people, horses in the center of the South Street Seaport activities in the sunset and creates the circular composition.

The diagonal path draws us into the depth of the picture and the distant Brooklyn bridge acts as an balancing and oppositional element.

The influence of John Stobart is obvious as a follower.


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