Marsen HartleyMARSDEN HARTLEY (1877 – 1943) was born in Maine, and by World War I had established his reputation as a major American modern artist. Never calling any place home, Hartley came to Dogtown in 1931 and was profoundly moved by the rock formations and by his return to New England soil. Hartley’s paintings and sketches of Dogtown, done from 1931 to 1937, were primal and powerful and marked a mature stage in his art. Hartley also wrote poems throughout his life. His poems and paintings sometimes intersect, as is the case with “Beethoven (in Dogtown),” inscribed on the reverse of the painting “Flaming Pool, Dogtown 1931.” “Soliloquy in Dogtown – Cape Ann” amplifies themes from “Beethoven (in Dogtown).”  In 1985 and again in 2012, the Cape Ann Museum in Gloucester mounted a major exhibition of Marsden Hartley's Dogtown paintings accompanied by his Dogtown poems.


Soliloquy in Dogtown poem

from: Marsden Hartley:Soliloquy in Dogtown (Gloucester: Cape Ann Historical Association) 1985.
courtesy: Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University