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American Paintings

Christie's New York

10 A.M., November 30, 2011


Sale 2485

Oscar Bluemner

Lot 19,"Illusion of a Prairie, New Jersey (Red Farm at Pochuck)," by Oscar Florianus Bluemner, oil on canvas, 30 by 40 inches, 1915


By Carter B. Horsley

The November 30, 2011 American Paintings auction at Christie's New York is highlighted by superb paintings by Oscar Florianus Bluemner, Marsden Hartley, Jerome Thompson and Louis Lang, and fine works by Georgia O'Keefe, Frederic Edwin Church, David Johnson, John Singer Sargent, Jerome Thompson, George Lambdin, William McGregor Paxton and Louis Ritman

Lot 19, "Illustion of a Prairie, New Jersey (Red Farm at Pochuck)," is a masterwork by Oscar Florianus Bluemner.  An oil on canvas that measures 30 by 40 inches, it was painted in 1915.  The painting, which was the cover illustration of the auction catalogue, has been widely exhibited and extensively published.

It has an estimate of $2,000,000 to $3,000,000.
 It sold for $5,345,500 including the buyer' premium as do all results mentioned in this article.  The price was a world auction record for the artist.

The sale sold 87 ot 136 offered lots, or 64 percent, a very low percentage, but Eric Widing, the head of Christie's American Paintings Department, said that "top prices returned to the American marketplace."


Hartley


Lot 20, "Movement, Sails," by Marsden Hartley, oil on board, 24 by 20 inches, 1916

Lot 20 is a masterwork by Marsden Hartley (1877-1943) entitled "Movement, Sails."  An oil on board, it measures 24 by 20 inches and was painted in Provincetown, Massachusetts in 1916.  He was invited to Provincetown by John Reed and spent the summer there with Charles Demuth and Eugene O'Neill.

It has an estimte of $1,000,000 to $1,500,000.  It sold for $1,874,500.



 O'Keeffe


Lot 15, "My Autumn," by Georgia O'Keeffe, oil on canvas, 40 by 30 inches, 1929

Lot15 is a very fine flower painting by Georgia O'Keeffe (1887-1986).  Entitled "My Autumn," it is an oil on canvas that measures 40 by 30 inches and was painted in 1929.  It has an estimate of $2,000,000 to $3,000,000.  It sold for $2,770,500.



Church sunset

Lot 46, "Twilight," by Frederic Edwin Church, oil on canvas tacked over board, 13 1/4 by 22 1/2 inches,1863

Lot 46 is a good "Twilight" scene by Frederic Edwin Church that was painted in 1863.  An oilon canvas tacked over board, it measures 13 1/4 by 22 1/2 inches.  It was once owned by William Henry Osborn.  It has an estimate of $1,000,000 to $1,500,000.  It sold for $3,218,500.





Bierstadt

Lot 56, "Jungfraus," by Albert Bierstadt, oil on canvas, 18 by 27 1/4 inches

Lot 56 is a very nice painting of "Jungfrau" by Albert Bierstadt (1830-1902).  An oil on canvas, it measures 18 by 27 1/4 inches.  It has an estimate of $250,000 to $350,000.  It sold for $242,500.


Jerome Thompson

Lot 119, "Pastoral," by Jerome Thompson, oil on canvas laid down on masonite, 26 by 40 inches, 1872


Lot 119 is a masterwork by Jerome Thompson (1814-1886) entitled "Pastoral."  An oil on canvas laid down on masonite, it measures 26 by 40 inches and is dated 1872.  It was once in the Thyssen-Bornemisza Collection.  It has a modest estimate of $25,000 to  $35,000.  It sold for $40,000.


Louis Lang

Lot 126, "Reminiscences of Lake Mahopac - Ladies Preparing for a Boat Race," by Louis Lang, oil on canvas, 44 1/2 by 61 1/4 inches,1864-5

Another genre masterwork that was once in the Thyssen-Bornemisza Collection is Lot 126, "Reminiscenes of Lake Mahopac - Ladies Preparing for a Boat Race," by Louis Lang (1814-1893).  An oil on canvas, it measures 44 1/2 by 61 1/4 inches and is dated 1864-5.  It has a modest estimate of $30,000 to $50,000.  It sold for $30,000.


Cropsey camel hump

Lot 44, "Sunset, Camel's Hump, Lake Champlain," by Jasper Francis Cropsey, oil on canvas, 12 by 20 inches, 1877

Lot 44 is a lovely luminist scene of "Sunset, Camel's Hump, Lake Champlain" by Jasper Francis Cropsey (1823-1900).  An oil on canvas, it measures 12 by 20 inches and is dated 1877.  It has an estimate of $150,000 to $250,000.  It sold for $314,500.


David Johnson


Lot 135, "In the White Mountains," by David Johnson, oil on canvas, 8 by 12 inches, 1858


Lot 135 is a jewel of a landscape by David Johnson (1827-1908) entitled "In the White Mountains."  An oil on canvas,  it measures 8 by 12 inches and is dated 1858.  It has a modest estimate of $30,000 to $50,000.  It sold for $40,000.


Sargent watercolor

Lot 63, "The Pizzazetta with Gondolas," by John Singer Sargen, watercolor and pencil on paper, 10 by 14 inches, circa 1902-4

Lot 63 is a good watercolor sketch of Venice by John Singer Sargent (1856-1925) entitled "The Pizzazetta with Gondolas."  It measures 10 by 14 inches and was executed circa 1902-4.  It has an estimate of S600,000 to $800,000.  It sold for  $842,500.


La Farge blue fish
Lot 58, "Study of the Parrot Fish," by John La Farge, oil panel, 8 by 12 inches, 1890

Lot 58 is a fine oil on panel by John La Farge (1835-1910) entitled "Study of the Parrot Fish."  It measures 8 by 12 inches and was painted in 1890.  It has an estimate of $40,000 to $60,000.  It sold for $60,000.

Jones girl rowboat

Lot 70, "Women Fishing," by Francis Coates Jones, oil on canvas, 12 1/2 by 22 1/2 inches

Lot 70 is a lyrical work by Francis Coates Jones (1857-1932) entitled "Women Fishing."  An oil on canvas, it measures 12 1/2 by 22 1/2 inches.  It has a modest estimate of $40,000 to $60,000.  It sold  for $40,000.

Paxton lady sofa

Lot 75, "The Crystal," by William McGregor Paxton, oil on canvas, 65 by 72 inches  1900

Lot 75 is a masterwork by William McGregor Paxton (1869-1941).  Entitled "The Crystal," it is a portrait of his wife, Elizabeth Okie and is an oil on canvas that measures 65 by 75 inches.  It was painted in 1900 and is a great example of the Boston school of painters who specialized in depicting beautiful women.  Paxton's style shows the influence of Vermeer and Ingres.  The painting has an estimate of $600,000 to $800,000.  It failed  to sell.



Frieseke pink lady

Lot 67, "Lady Trying on a Hat," by Frederick Carl Frieseke, oil on canvas, 64 1/4 by 52 inches, 1909

Lot 67 is a very beautiful and painterly work by Frederick Carl Frieseke (1874-1939) entitled "Lady Trying on a Hat."  Painted in 1909, it is an oil on canvas that measures 64 1/2 by 52 inches.  It is being sold inexplicably by order of the board of trustees of the Art Institute of Chicago.  It has an estimate of $1,000,000 to $1,500,000.  It failed to sell.


Ritman flowers

Lot 66, "In the Garden," by Louis Ritman, oil on canvas, 36 inches square

Lot 66 is a very attractive oil on canvas by Louis Ritman (1889-1963) entitled "In the Garden.  It is 36 inches square.  It has an estimate of $250,000 to $350,000.  It sold for $542,500, a world auction record for the artist.


Ritman stripes

Lot 69, "Interior," by Louis Ritman, oil on canvas, 32 inches square, 1918

Lot 69 is a fabulous painting by Louis Ritman (1889-1963) entitled "Interior," an oil on canvas that was painted in 1918 and is 32 inches square.  Ritman was one of a few prominent American artists who spent time in Giverny, France, and espoused a jewelly and exotic palette combined with considerable painterliness. The other well-known artists were Richard Miller, perhaps the best of the group, and Frederick Frieseke. This is a wonderful example of Ritman's lush style and boldly patterned compositions. When it was offered at Christie's December 1, 2005, it had a modest estimate of $200,000 to $300,000 and sold for $240,000.  The catalogue for that auction noted that the work is a fine example of "intimism" and that "The artist's unique celebration of the vibrant patterns and textures of interior furnishings - wallpaper, upholstery, carpeting, and also costume - set his work apart from the Intimist interiors of his American peers."At this auction,it has the same estimate.  It failed to sell. 



Homer grass

Lot 51, "Young Woman," by Winslow Homer, watercolor, 9 1/2 by 13 3/4 inches, 1880


Lot 51 is a pleasant watercolor of a "Young Woman" with an umbrella standing on a beach by Winslow Homer (1836-1910).  It measures 9 1/2 by 13 3/4 inches and is dated 1880.  It has an estimate of $250,000 to $350,000.  It sold for $242,500.  At Christie's December 4, 2003 it sold for $511,500 when it had an estimate of $500,000 to $700,000.



Butler sunset

Lot 65, "Sunset at Veules-les-Roses, Seine-Mar," by Theodore Earl Butler, oil on canvas, 19 1/4 by 28 3/4 inches, 1905



Lot 65 is an impressive riverscape entitled "Sunset at Veules-les-Roses, Seine-Mar," by Theodore Earl Butler (1860-1936).  An oil on canvas, it measures 19 1/4 by 28 3/4 inches and was painted in 1905.  It has a modest estimate of $30,000 to $50,000.  It sold for $30,000.


Heade sunset

Lot 46, "Haystack at Sunset," by Martin J. Heade, oil  on canvas, 12 by 20 inches, circa 1861-6

Lot 46 is a very good "haystack" picture by Martin J. Heade that was painted circa 1861-6.  An oil on canvas, it measures 12 by 20 inches.  It has an estimate of $700,000 to $1,000,000.  It failed to sell.


Inness landscape


Lot 48, "Sunset, Milking Time, Montclair, New Jersey," by George Inness, oil on canvas, 22 by 36 1/2 inches, 1889


Lot 48 is a classic late work by George Inness entitled "Sunset, Milking Time, Montclair, New Jersey."  An oil on canvas, it measures 22 by 36 1/2 inches and is dated 1889.  It has an estimate of $80,000 to $120,000.  It sold for $74,500.


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