Gold Dredger, Sacramento Watercolor | Wayne Thiebaud
Gold Dredger, Sacramento Watercolor | Wayne Thiebaud
Gold Dredger, Sacramento Watercolor | Wayne Thiebaud
Gold Dredger, Sacramento Watercolor | Wayne Thiebaud

Gold Dredger, Sacramento

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This early watercolor by Wayne Thiebaud titled “Gold Dredger” Sacramento, was inspired by the numerous dredge machines that were present in the Sacramento River from the early 20th century on. Dredging the operation of removing material from one part of the water environment and relocating it to another by a floating plant called a dredger. This was a cheaper and more effective way to sort through the river sediment to find gold. Sacramento is just an hour south of the Yuba Goldfields, the largest gold dredge in California. Thiebaud moved to Sacramento to attend college in 1950. After graduating he became an assistant professor at Cal State Sacramento. During a leave of absence in 1956-1957 he went to New York and met many of the abstract expressionists who were working there at the time. It is possibly the influence of these artists that inspired this abstraction upon his return to California in 1958.