Quick Reference

Time Period:
1932- '33

North Hadley, MA

Pastel on Board


Villages, Ponds, Churches, Farm

*26" x 21" or 29" x 22"

Macbeth Galleries (NYC), 1933




This chalk drawing is one of 3 paintings of the same subject. There are only two images, both oils.

*Most chalk drawings are H22" x W29" (an aspect ratio [AR] of 1.32) but there are a handful of pastels with a lower AR of 1.24 at H21" x W26". We think it is more likely, if this pastel painting was made AFTER the original 36" x 30" oil painting April in North Hadley (1931), than it will be more square or the 26" x 21" size. It is still possible Woodward made the pastel using 29" x 22" size with the full sky. We really do not know, we just think it is unlikely. It would be only one or two of its kind.

Related Links

Featured Artwork: The Village in April

Edited - April in the Village

RSW's Diary Comments

The Village in Spring Sepia Print
April in North Hadley
This image is April in the Village which we used to
illustrate how April in North Hadley later became
The Village in Spring. While there are 4 names con-
nected to this subject. There are only 3 physical
paintings that actually exist and only two images.

Woodward did not keep a record of his pastel paintings he called chalk drawings.

Editor's Note:

This pastel (Woodward called chalk drawings) exhibited at the Macbeth Gallery in New York City in 1932, which is a big deal in and of itself, because he rarely showed his chalks at Macbeth. For that reason it stands out.

We do not know a lot about this artwork other than it exist and exhibited at the Macbeth Galleries in December of 1932, through January of 1933. A painting with a similar name was mentioned in an article in the New York Post during the same show and its description matches the subject of what we believe are 4 titles but only a total of 3 paintings. One painting (illustrated to the right) was cut down from its original size of H36 x W30" to H30" x W27" and renamed.

Initially, we believed the mis-naming of this chalk drawing in the newspaper was an error by the reviewer. However, we discovered that color photo from 2006 we found recently (Oct. 2023) is NOT a H30" x W27" canvas but rather a 30" x 30" size, meaning it may have been at Macbeth but was left off the show's program. See April In the Village for more.

Additional Notes

The Church and Meeting Hall
The Church and Meeting Hall... the distinct
steeple can be seen clearly in the painting. Past that
church one can see the bell tower of the other church.

To the right: is the Congregational Church and Town Meeting Hall of the North Hadley Historic District that appeal in the painting behind the two barns.

This pastel exhibited at the Macbeth Gallery in New York City in 1932, which is a big deal in and of itself, because he rarely showed his chalks at Macbeth. For that reason it stands out.

The following is a quote from the newspaper regarding The Village in April. Though the reviewer does not mention the medium of the artwork, it is clear they are referring to this scene...

New York Post, Dec. 22, 1932

"...Tender color in the budding elms and pale sky of April In the Village, contrasted with the rich notes of the old weathered red barns..."

New York Post, Dec. 22, 1932
New York Post, Dec. 22, 1932

Note the mix up in the name. We do not know, nor have we confirmed whether Dr. Mark added the name of this painting to the catalog as a result of this article where we believe the reviewer transposed the name and got it wrong... OR if that is the name of the painting in the picture we are using that Dr. Mark got from its owner 18 years ago.

We are 80% confident the reviewer mixed up the name for two reason:
[1] The name April In the Village, does not appear in our exhibition list, and...
[2] We have the program of the 1932 Macbeth exhibition and only The Village in April is listed and it is listed as a chalk drawing.
The remaining 20% uncertainty is the fact that as often as reviewers get the name of a painting wrong, so do printer manager to forget to include a painting on its program. There is also the fact that at times there are last minute substitutions and it is too late to change the program. This does happen with equal frequency.

There is one more thing that may be possible. Woodward, at times, would feature a chalk drawing and an oil painting together- not mentioning the oil painting at all, such as at the 1929 Pynchon Gallery Exhibition that solely featured the chalk drawings but have now learned had corresponding oil paintings matching the chalks in another room.

We believe this was his way of showing off, 'Hey, I can draw as well as I paint and I paint as well as I draw... AND you can hardly tell the difference.' There is more and more evidence pointing to this theory as well as how meaningful the pastels are to the artist which is why they are important. But that is an essay for another day soon to come.