We live in the land of the Hudson River School of painters of which the founder Thomas Cole and one of his students, Federick Church, are two of the most famous. Both loved this area and often depicted the Hudson Valley and the Catskills in their spiritually expressive symbolic paintings. Church built an interesting (to say the least) house on a high hill overlooking both the mountains & the Hudson. He and his wife were taken by Persian architecture so - because they could - built this homestead that is a combination of Middle Eastern design and Victorian furnishings. Some love it, some are appalled by this unusual structure that sits among spawling, rural farm country. To me the point is that this home, its location and the love that Church poured into it epitomizes an artist's pursuit of passion. Church loved this home and designed every detail, every vista and every tile with the care and attention he gave to his masterpiece, The Heart of the Andes.
As an aside, I was recently in the company of two artists who declared they were 'bored' (yes, that is the word they used) with the Hudson River School style of painting. How pretentious I found this statement. I do agree that sometimes a style or type of art may get so copied it becomes watered down and can seem uninspired but throwing the baby out with the bathwater misses the point of great art. The reason this and other painting styles have been so studied and replicated is due to the fact that they are of mounumental merit in the art history world and remain of importance even after having endured falling in and out of favor with those that become 'bored' with the latest art fads.