[Lake and hills]

8 15/16 x 11 15/16 in. (22.7 x 30.3 cm)
Estate/Inventory Number
P 38
Collection of Christopher Rothko. © Kate Rothko Prizel and Christopher Rothko
This early watercolor of a lake with rolling hills might have been made at Lake George, New York, where Rothko spent time during the summer of 1932. It was here, while camping at Hearthstone Point near the southern end of the lake, that he met his future wife, Edith Sachar (1912–1981). Rothko’s application of paint, however, suggests an earlier date. Rothko traveled from New York to his hometown of Portland, Oregon, several times between 1926 and 1933, and it is possible that this work was made not at Lake George but during a previous cross-country trip. Regardless, it appears to relate to a smaller, more quickly rendered sketch made in an eighteen-hole sketchbook (see Related Works on Paper).