Quick Reference

Time Period:
Painted in 1931

Keach Farm, Charlemont Rd.
Buckland, Mass.

Oil on Canvas


Trees, Barns

27 X 30

Miss Shea



The Keach farm was so popular a subject for RSW, it has its own gallery.

Related Links

Featured Artwork: The Greening Tree, 27 x 30

RSW's Diary Comments

"Painted in 1931. Painted at Keach's farm. Very large dramatic apple tree in very full bloom (white), little red barn and parts of Keach's house beyond --- over them the mountains under a blue and white May sky---foreground lush green meadow with some white ducks in the grass. Sold to Miss Shea, N.Y. in 1956."

Comments on the back of a sepia print:

"Light and delicate with spring greens, looking too dark in this photograph. The little barn red, the tree snowy white, the clouds, delicate spring colorings, the hills pale blues and violets."

"Spirit of New England countryside in May. Lush May greens, barn pale pinky red, hills violet. Blue sky with May clouds. Apple tree in full bloom - white. A very happy canvas!"

Additional Notes

There is a bit of mystery surrounding this painting with the discovery (August 2015) of another painting of the same name but different size (16 x 20). The mystery is, 'why RSW did not mention the other painting in his diary comments?' The two paintings are nearly indentical with regard to the barns, the greening tree and sky, yet different with regard to the livestock (ducks appear in the 27", not in the 16") and persective of the trees, hills and farmhouse in the background. The mystery raises some questions:

  • Did Woodward simply forget he did the smaller version? The 27" version exhibited quite often and didn't sell until 25 years after it was painted.
  • Was RSW commissioned to do a version of the 27" but smaller to fit a particular space the client desired and without the ducks?
  • It's unlikely because of the similar skies, but did RSW sit twice to paint each painting thus the different perspective the more "right" of the painting you go?
  • Is there a chalk drawing of these paintings from which RSW worked from to create each piece?

The assumption is that the 27 x 30 was the original because RSW almost never used 16 x 20 as a canvas size.

Side by side comparison.
A side by side comparison of the 27 x 30 sephia image and the newly discovered 16 x 20.
The paintings are nearly identical in perspective, in fact, the barns match perfectly.

Also Noteworthy: Although the sepia image is not of great quality, the skies of both paintings appear remarkably similar in context and perspective, making their relationship and RSW's never mentioning both paintings all the more intriguing.

Below: Is a super-imposition of the two images and you can see the barns match perfectly but there are variable differences in perspective of the trees, hill and farmhouse in the background.


For more information on what a Greening Tree is, please Click Here!