A Wooded Watershed by Daniel Garber

  • A Wooded Watershed by Daniel Garber

A Wooded Watershed by Daniel Garber

Written and recorded by Elin Wood in July 2015

Hello, my name is Elin and you are looking at The Wooded Watershed by Daniel Garber.

This painting is 22 ft. wide and 11 ft. high. That is bigger than the average great white shark!

How does this painting make you feel?

Does it make you feel peaceful?


Ready for adventure?

Daniel Garber was asked to make this painting to celebrate the 150th Anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence. Some time after that celebration, they lost track of the painting. No one knew that it had been installed as a theater background for a college in Pennsylvania.

When they discovered the mural, it was dirty and damaged but intact. The janitors and students at the school did not know where to throw their cigarette butts, so they decided to throw them behind the painting. There were also tears and creases in the canvas.

The school gave the painting to the Michener Art Museum in the mid 1990’s. Conservators came in to fix the painting so that it could be in the permanent collection. Conservators use special tools and materials to help repair artwork that has been damaged.

When you look at this work of art, you are seeing a landscape painting of the Delaware River and the surrounding woods.

If you stand far away from this painting, you can see the whole image and landscape: the deer, water, rocks, trees and distant mountains in the background.

If you step closer to the painting, you can see all the different textures in the paint.

When you look up close, everything does not look so smooth.

What does this painting remind you of?

Your backyard?

A certain storybook?

Imagine yourself stepping into the painting.

What would it be like?

Would the wind be blowing in your face? Would the sun be glistening on the water? Would you hear the sound of birds?

If you look at the bottom right hand corner, you will see a red mark. What do you think that is?

What do you think that looks like? Even today it remains a mystery why the strange looking red mark is there.

I hope you enjoyed learning about The Wooded Watershed and I hope you have a great rest of your day at the Museum.