On December 3, Freemans
will host its American Art & Pennsylvania Impressionists sale. Collectors will be especially pleased to discover works by sought after artists such as Thomas Eakins, Edward Willis Redfield, Reginald Marsh and Daniel Garber among many others.
One of the highlights of the sale is Lot 15, Miss Eleanor S. F. Pue by Thomas Eakins (American 1844-1916). The portrait, dated 1907, is among the last portraits of young women Thomas Eakins painted in his career. Not concerned with pleasing the sitter, Eakins portraits were not simply artistic flattery, but instead an opportunity for him to experiment and satisfy artistic needs. The strength and rawness of Miss Pues portrait exemplifies the depth and revealing nature with which Eakins painted. This lot is accompanied with three letters from the artist regarding arrangements for the sittings and is estimated between $50,000-80,000.
Another noteworthy piece showcased is Lot 110, The Snow Storm by Edward Willis Redfield (American 1869-1965), executed in 1915. Edward Willis Redfield built his reputation through powerful landscape paintings, which he almost exclusively executed en plein air. The present work was painted near the artists home in 1915, and its style is typical for Redfield. The palette is sparse, with dove grays, blue grays and touches of lavender to render the quietness of the moment. Redfield managed to animate the scene with carefully arranged splashes of colorson the hats of the villagers and barn façadesproving his ability to enliven a village muted by snow. The Snow Storm is estimated between $100,000-150,000.
The sale features five paintings by artist and Philadelphia native Susette Inoles Schultz Keast. Born in 1892, Keast studied at both the Philadelphia School of Design for Women (now Moore College of Art) and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Arts. She was a member of The Philadelphia Ten, a group comprised of students of the Philadelphia School of Design whose efforts were to exhibit their work independently, having been barred from many public institutions based on their gender. The Inner Harbor, (Lot 131, estimate: $10,000-15,000) was exhibited at PAFA in 1931, and Keasts short brushstrokes and treatment of sunlight on the surface of the water are emblematic of her Impressionist style.
Reginald Marsh (American 1898-1954) will be represented on Dec. 3 with a piece entitled Bowery Scene. Executed in 1945, this painting depicts a solitary woman among a crowd of men, along what seems to be the Third Avenue elevated railway in Manhattan. As is often the case with Marsh, this scene depicts an attractive and confident woman in the center, in stark contrast with her somewhat pitiful, leering admirers. Bowery Scene is estimated between $70,000-$100,000.
One of the most exciting pieces in the American Art & Pennsylvania Impressionists sale is A Jersey Road by Daniel Garber (American 1880-1958), executed in 1929. Garber is considered one of the most influential Pennsylvania Impressionists and this landscape is set in the idyllic New Hope area where the artist lived.
Characteristic of Garbers style, the painting employs a screen of trees and falling shadows to frame the rolling landscape beyond. A Jersey Road is estimated between $200,000-300,000.
The sale also features a signed watercolor by Maurice Sendak entitled Reading is fun! featuring the characters Moishe, Bernard and Max from Sendaks Where the Wild Things Are, (estimated $40,000-60,000). Other notable works include Fern Isabel Coppedges The Garden Wall, (estimated $30,000-50,000); five works by Walter Elmer Schofield and two works by John Fulton Folinsbee.
Whether buying or selling, Freemans is at the heart of the Pennsylvania Impressionism market with many of the major collectors located in the immediate area, Chairman and Fine Art Department Head, Alasdair Nichol said. It promises to be an exciting auction featuring many leading American artists and I anticipate another packed sale-room on December 3rd.