|It is a copy of a Thomas Moran painting done from nature in 1876.
The artist was born Eva Ann Lingenfelter (variably cited as Lingenfels, Lingerfelte, Lingenfalter, and Lingenfetler) on January 5, 1839 in Montgomery County, New York, the daughter of John L. and Martha Lingenfelter. Shortly after 1855, she moved to Madison, Wisconsin, where she married photographer Edwin Rodney Curtiss (1836-1906) on May 11, 1859. She died in Sanford, Florida, on October 28, 1920 and was buried in Madison.
In 1876 the Women's Centennial Committee of Wisconsin commissioned noted American landscape artist Thomas Moran (1837-1926) to paint two scenes depicting the beauty of the Madison lakes and to be inspired by a poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow which he wrote for the Committee. Both paintings ("Sunrise on Lake Monona" and "Sunset on Lake Mendota") were exhibited at the 1876 Centennial Exposition of Philadelphia. Afterwards, they were acquired by the State and displayed in the art gallery of Science Hall on the University of Wisconsin campus.