Atardecer pampeano (Sunset in the Pampa)

La Pampa Province, Argentina
1860 circa
oil on canvas
Museo Histórico de Buenos Aires “Cornelio de Saavedra”
Locate on map View in timeline About the artist

The wide expanse of the pampas of Argentina and Uruguay, which were ideal sites for raising cattle, became the source of inspiration for many South American landscape painters. Here, Prilidiano Pueyrredón has emphasized the flatness of the terrain, using a horizontal orientation to accentuate the negative space that dramatic mountains or rushing waterfalls might have filled in other views. For Pueyrredón, the beauty of the landscape is found in the weight of the sunset falling on this flattened stretch of land. Marking the intersection of productivity and aesthetic pleasure, Atardecer pampeano also captures the liminality of the pampa, as day turns to night and the civilizing efforts of cattle raising give way to the unruly darkness.