This unsigned turn of the 20th century Mexican portrait of an intimate moment shared between a mother and her child. Drawing from the chiaoscuro that post-colonial Mexican artists favored, this back lit portrait hides the child in the protective shadow of her mother.
This is a mid-century painting by well-known artist and teacher from Atlanta, GA. By combining both his skill as a still life artist and his interest in the humor and conflation of reality and dream-scape of the surrealists, Jennings presents the eagle-eyed viewer with a variety of Atlanta hallmarks wedged in the ground. The tazza urn, which dominates the foreground is a red herring, showing Jenning’s interest in the misdirective impulse of the Surrealists that preceded him. The real artist effort is instead focused on the background, showing the Coca Cola bottles, a high flying Atlanta Falcon, even a Brave’s face peeking around the wine bottle, surrounded by the racing flags of a motor circuit. This reversal of importance- the background holding significance over the fore is a thoroughly contemporary artistic practice, first pioneered by Pollock in the abstract and then again by Warhol in the figural.
After popular American culture decried the rigorously theoretical art of the immediate post-War period, painters took it upon themselves to re-establish the technical and naturalistic styles which had been lost by moving art into an ultra-mimetic style known as photorealism. This excellent example shows how brushstrokes can be blended into perfectly divided rays of light, and even the individual flight feathers of the eagle are articulated with great precision.
This twentieth century Russian painter best known for his Impressionistic cityscapes joins the ranks of our special “Not-so-Dead” artists. Proshkin’s images of New York are reminiscent of Childe Hassam and Marsden Hartley’s early work. The open brushwork of this painting encourages hanging strategies which include long vistas, allowing the composition space to come together at distance.
27 x 21 in appropriate silver gilded Italian frame
Initialed L/L “MR” with BARCELONA canvas stamp, verso
This mid-century Spanish portscape executed in the quasi-cubic style is clearly influenced by the more controlled, grid-like synthetic cubism of Georges Braque, although it bears a visual resonance with the simplified forms and color palettes of Diego Rivera’s murals.
This austere portrait of the old Kolval kilns in the Yakima valley was painted circa 1940-50. Only the cones of the kiln remain this day, ghosts of a formerly active factory. This type of kilns, called beehive kilns could have been used for anything from charcoal, drying plant matter or firing pottery. Although a few extant kilns in the Yakima valley match the shape, most buildings have fallen away, making an accurate identification impossible. This archival treated watercolor will retain its color with more fidelity than a similar non-treated piece.
Signed L/R “Gottfried Lorenz” ( 1860-1928). Charming rural scene depicting the south of France found in the vicinity of Nice. Lorenz was especially proficient in his representation of country and rural life, seen through the eyes of the Impressionists. Although biographical information is scarce, Herr Lorenz has an impeccable auction record, making appearences in Linz and Vienna, Austria, Rudolstadt, Buxtehude and Konstanz Germany, as well as San Rafael, CA and even Bonham’s in San Francisco. This medium sized piece lends itself to a variety of viewing angles, as Lorenz’s impulse to represent naturalistically gives way to open brushstrokes in clouds, trees and plains.
Miller, born in New York City, graduated from City College of New York with his MFA before traveling to Spain in the 1930s. While abroad, Miller was influenced by the theory and art of Pablo Picasso. His portraits of everyday life, city scapes and landscapes of the Catskills were often executed in encaustic, where the paint is suspended in wax, instead of oil. The heavy outlines and brilliant colors achieved through the waxy encaustic endow this piece with a stained glass-like appearence. First used by the Eastern Orthodox church for icon painting, encaustic was embraced by the vanguard of American artists, first Arthur Dove(1880-1946)and most famously Jasper Johns(1930- ), who used its historical resonance as a commentary on the value and sanctity of every day life.
16.5 in x 12.5 in, circa 1935-1940, in earlier frame
Either French or English, in original figured wood frame, circa 1790. The style of the sporting portait arose from the limner painters of the 1600s in both England and France who favored flattened perspectives for details such as this woodcock’s feathers to contrast more clearly. The style of these historically untrained painters was eventually adopted by the academy, who found value in the visual pop created by layering a bright detail over neutral fields of color.