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Lot 0114
Julian Onderdonk (Am. 1882-1922), Road Through the Trees, 1913-1914, oil on canvas, 25 x 30, signed lower left: Julian Onderdonk; Illustrated in the Julian Onderdonk, Catalogue Raisonne: Catalogue No. 716 on page 202: Road Through the Trees

This remarkable painting encompasses the hallmarks of Julian’s refined brushwork and technique. These qualities were shaped in part by his familial background in art, but also from his training under William Merritt Chase while studying at Shinnecock School where he excelled, and at the art Students League of New York.

Julian Onderdonk, a native Texan born into a family of artists, has risen to become one of the foremost American impressionist painters to date. His work is included in and the subject of over 35 published books, and this painting is included in the most recent book, which is the catalogue Raisonne of his work, written and compiled by Harry Halff in 2016. Onderdonk’s paintings were widely exhibited across the country throughout his lifetime. Posthumously and most recently there have been several major retrospectives at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; The Dallas Museum of Art; and the San Antonio Museum of Art.

Road Through the Trees was executed in 1913-1914, which marks a constructive time in Julian’s life. He regularly visited New York with his family in the summers. While in Texas at this time, Cecelia Steinfeldt comments in her book, The Onderdonk Family of Texas Painters: “The time Julian spent in Texas was dedicated to his own painting. The vast expanse and the sweeping vistas of the Texas landscape were admirably suited to Julian’s temperament. The young artists’ reputation was growing, and as a consequence, the sale of his pictures was increasing.” This positive spirit is evident in this painting with the bright color of blue in the sky, the light yet sculptural clouds, the pink rock rose flowers scattered throughout the groundcover, and most astute are the vibrant lush trees jumping from the canvas. The dappled sunlight across the patches of foliage beneath the trees, and his effectual treatment of perspective with the road and fence line further his skilled “interpretation of nature” as Steinfeldt describes it.

His paintings can be found in the following permanent collections: El Paso Museum of Art; Witte Memorial Museum; Crystal Bridges Museum; Stark Museum of Art; Morris Museum of Art, Augusta, GA; Ogden Museum of Sothern Art, New Orleans; Amon Carter Museum of Art; LBJ Library and Museum; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; Los Angeles County Museum of Art; Meadows Museum, Southern Methodist University; and Dallas Museum of Art; to name a few.

Provenance: Private Collection, Dallas, Texas

Literature: Illustrated in the Julian Onderdonk, Catalogue Raisonne: Catalogue No. 716 on page 202: “Road Through the Trees”

Condition: Excellent condition. Texture and impasto in paint surface is excellent. The painting does not show any in-painting or abrasions under a black light. The painting is stable and has been relined.

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Julian Onderdonk (Am. 1882-1922), Road Through the

Estimate $250,000 - $350,000
$120,0000 bids
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