Oil on board, 10 x 16.75 inches/Signed lower right
Born in Fabius, Onondaga County, NY; very little is known of his life. He married Maria M. Matteson of Pratts Hollow, NY, ~25 miles northeast of Fabius, in 1847. It seems that he started his painting career late, as no information is available that he was painting at this time. Sometime after their marriage, the couple moved to Binghamton, NY --it is known that Boss operated a music store there during the 1850s until ca. 1863. In 1864, Owen joined his brothers in an ink manufacturing business in Binghamton. Their ink was awarded a diploma and silver medal by the New York State Fair in 1863, but the firm was no longer in business by ca 1867. Is it this time that Boss pursued painting full-time? Boss knew the crews of the Delaware & Hudson Railway (D & H), which ran from the anthracite fields of Pennsylvania through Binghamton, the northeastern states and into Canada. These friendships provided him with a bonus -- he often got free rides, which took him into the areas around Lake George, Glen Falls, the Finger Lakes region, Hudson River, and Franconia Notch in the White Mountains (NH) among other stops along the line. There is no record of where he received his art training, but it is likely he had some – perhaps from the noted landscape artists of the time, which he would have had the opportunity to meet, and possibly paint with, on his D & H excursions. Boss painted in the style of the Hudson River School artists, so it is likely he knew at least some of them. There is no doubt that he was well-received – he was invited to exhibit at the National Academy of Design, a venue whose members were elected by their peers.