Aiden Lassell Ripley’s achievements as an artist were widely recognized by museums and associations alike. He exhibited his foreign landscapes and also painted scenes of Boston and the surrounding communities, but as an avid outdoorsman he became best known for his watercolors depicting sporting themes. While his name became synonymous with sporting art, Ripley also enjoyed painting themes of everyday life, often found while exploring the streets of Boston or the more rural scenery of Lexington and other nearby towns.
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Snow at Easter is a wonderful example of Ripley’s non-sporting work, demonstrating his talent for elevating the ordinary to the extraordinary: “My approach to painting is realistic but frequently my pictures are a free interpretation of the subject. People and their occupations are an important part of almost everything I paint and usually they express the main interest in the picture.” The painting, which shows Saint Charles Borromeo Parish on Main Street in Woburn, Massachusetts, is a pleasing depiction of parishioners making their way to church on Easter morning, with the chill of a late snowfall and icy tree branches offset by the warmth of the sun-splashed street and buildings. Whether Ripley attended services that morning or happened upon the scene while driving (as he often did in search of paintable subjects) is unknown, although a smaller 7” x 12” study of Snow at Easter, used as a reference for the larger composition, is currently in the collection of the Canton Museum of Art in Ohio. According to a handwritten list of exhibited paintings from the artist’s business records held in the Archives of American Art, a piece called Snow at Easter was shown at the American Watercolor Society in 1963, which is likely our painting.
 Aiden Lassell Ripley to Mr. Watson (publisher), requoted in a letter from Phyllis Church Maloney, Curator, Guild of Boston Artists, to Ms. Edith Tonelli, Curator, De Cordova Museum, November 12, 1976 (copy in files of Richard Cuda) See: O’Brien, Jr., Stephen B., and Julie Carlson Wildfeuer, The Art of Aiden Lassell Ripley (Boston: Stephen O’Brien, Jr. Fine Arts, LLC, 2009) p. 62, note 25 on p. 221
Private collection, Lexington, Massachusetts
(in pencil verso, at upper right) R#152 / Snow at Easter / 18 ½ x 29 ¼ / A. Lassell Ripley / 3500.00
(likely) American Watercolor Society, 1963