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Charles E. Burchfield (1893-1967), Rainy Day in July, July 11, 1915; graphite on paper, 12 ¾ x 17 inches; frame 22 1/8 x 26 x 7/8 inches; Burchfield Penney Art Center, Gift of the Estate of Phyllis M. Lutwack, 2018

Charles E. Burchfield (1893-1967), Rainy Day in July, July 11, 1915; graphite on paper, 12 ¾ x 17 inches; frame 22 1/8 x 26 x 7/8 inches; Burchfield Penney Art Center, Gift of the Estate of Phyllis M. Lutwack, 2018

At 4 A.M. on July 11, 1915, young Burchfield was already on his way to Post’s Woods in Salem, Ohio, on a search for raspberries. He noted: “a freight whistle echoing from the valley; the morning breeze is wet, the sky is grey – / I renewed the poetry of berry-picking – / The calls of the birds [are] echoed later with the freshening breeze in the clatter of rain thru the misty trees—on rainy days I see huge grotesque elms more than any other tree — Thru screen of rain streaked trees to see a crow flap across the blue overlapping valleyed hills- !” Both drooping, rain-soaked trees and huge imaginary phantom elms reflect the character of the day. — Nancy Weekly