Folk painting of a plantation mansion atop a hillside with various outbuildings leading to the water below
Original Author: Unknown
Created: ca. 1825
Medium: Oil on wood

The Plantation

This early nineteenth-century folk painting, titled The Plantation, depicts an idyllic plantation scene with a grand mansion atop a hill and various tidy outbuildings that lead down to the water. At the base of the hill is a large sailing ship that moves crops and supplies to and from the plantation. A small figure at lower right is fishing; on the hill to the right of him is a watermill next to a building where grain is probably being milled. Lush vegetation and flourishing grape vines frame the scene and impart a sense of abundance. The unknown artist may not have based this symmetrical scene on a particular location. Curators at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the owner of the painting, speculate that since "the artist’s technique seems to simulate the stitches of embroidery, he or she may have based the painting on a needlework design."