A life-long obsession with color would lead painter Hugh Henry Breckenridge to create brilliant Impressionist landscapes and bold abstracts exploring the theories behind color.
He had studied at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts from 1887 to 1892 and then traveled to Paris to study at the Academie Julian under Bouguereau. He would also travel with his friend Walter E. Schofield, a Pennsylvania Impressionist.
Breckenridge's work would take on the influences of his exposure to the genre, though in only a few short years he would begin to employ Neo-Impressionist techniques of Divisionism, which he called his "tapestry painting". Many believe this new method was the result of his second trip to Europe with Schofield in 1909 where they examined the works of the French "avant garde" painters.
His first solo exhibition would be in 1904, and he would also take commission work as well. He used dramatically different styles in his portraiture however, with much stronger finishing to the works. By 1922 Breckenridge was exhibiting strictly abstract works, but during his final years he returned to Impressionist landscapes of his Gloucester, Massachusetts home.
He had taken on a position in teaching at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in 1894 and would continue to do so for the next forty years. In addition to his teaching he was a member of many important associations and clubs, and was a Director of Fine Arts at the Maryland Institute, in 1919. He won numerous awards and honors, and is acknowledged as one of the first modern painters whose work was easily accessible to the public.
His works are in the collections of many major museums, including the Los Angeles County Museum and the San Francisco Museum of Art.