Grandma Moses leads American art offering at Swann Sept. 17

Grandma Moses stars

Anna Mary Robertson (Grandma) Moses, ‘Happy Days,’ oil on Masonite, 1961, 18½ x 26½in. Estimate: $50,000-$80,000. Swann image

NEW YORK – Swann Galleries will open the fall auction season with a sale of American art on Thursday, Sept. 17. The sale encompasses the visions of Impressionism, Regionalism and early Modernism, with seaside portraits showcasing various coastal destinations featuring prominently throughout the sale. Bid absentee or live online through LiveAuctioneers.

A top highlight of the auction is a work by Anna Mary Robertson “Grandma” Moses. Completed at 101 years of age, Happy Days (above) is a 1961 oil-on-Masonite painting depicting a typical Moses scene of a rural family working happily on their farm. The work is set to come across the block estimated at $50,000 to $80,000. The painting, with exhibition and publication history, last appeared on the market more than 40 years ago.

Works from the 19th century include a run of circa-1880 coastal scenes by Alfred Thompson Bricher with the oil-on-canvas works Low Tide, South Head, Grand Manan Island (below; $20,000-$30,000), and Schooner off the Coast, Bishop’s Rock, Grand Manon Island ($15,000-$20,000), as well as the watercolor A Coastal Scene ($2,000-$3,000). Also of note are still life scenes with fruit, including an 1850s oil-on-wood panel by Severin Roesen ($15,000-$20,000), and a circa-1860 oil by William Mason Brown.

Grandma Moses stars

Alfred Thompson Bricher, ‘Low Tide, South Head, Grand Manan Island,’ oil on canvas, circa 1880, 15 x 33in. Estimate: $20,000-$30,000. Swann image

Impressionist scenes lead the sale with coastal watercolors by Childe Hassam: A Shady Spot (Appledore, Isle of Shoals), 1892 (below; $80,000-$120,000), and Sailboat off the Coast, Isle of Shoals, 1894 ($30,000-$50,000). Also depicting the Isle of Shoals is John Appleton Brown’s circa-1890 color pastel Celia Thaxter’s Garden and View of the Sea, Isle of Shoals ($7,000-$10,000). Additional Impressionist works of note include Alice Mary (Beach) Winter’s circa 1915 oil-on-canvas View of Gloucester ($5,000-$8,000), Edward Potthast’s oil-on-canvas New England Harbor Scene, circa 1900–10 ($5,000-$8,000), and a small run of works by Gertrude Fiske including the oil on board Boston Waterfront, circa 1919-22 ($2,000-$3,000).

Grandma Moses stars

Childe Hassam, ‘A Shady Spot (Appledore, Isle of Shoals),’ watercolor on cream wove paper, 1892, 19¾ x 14¼in. Estimate: $80,000-$120,000. Swann image

Marsden Hartley’s 1922-23 color crayon and pastel drawing Seated Male Nude stands out in an offering of early Modernism ($30,000-$50,000). Charles Burchfield is present with Untitled (Harmony in Nature) gouache over pencil, circa 1915-16 ($7,000-$10,000), and Frozen House in Winter, watercolor and gouache, circa 1918 ($10,000-$15,000). Joseph Stella’s oil-on-canvas Still Life with Chrysanthemums and Goldfish, circa 1911-12 makes an appearance ($12,000-$18,000). Additional highlights include works by Nils Gren, Walt Kuhn and Jerome Myers.

Grandma Moses stars

Marsden Hartley, ‘Seated Male Nude,’ color crayons and pastel on wove paper, 1922-23, 18 x 23½in. Estimate: $30,000-$50,000. Swann image

Scenes of New York City throughout the seasons include Guy Wiggins’s circa-1940 oil-on-canvas Snow Scene, depicting a busy winter day as people make their way to their destinations in a snowstorm ($20,000-$30,000). Reginald Marsh’s circa-1930 oil-on-canvas Manhattan, Waterfront, which depicts the Manhattan skyline on a clear day ($15,000-$20,000), and John Marin’s 1953 watercolor View of Central Park, New York, showing a loose rendering of the park’s trees and the city skyline ($15,000-$20,000), are also available.

Grandma Moses stars

Guy Wiggins, ‘Fifth Avenue, New York, in Snow,’ oil on canvas, circa 1940, 24×17 inches. Estimate: $20,000-$30,000. Swann image

Paintings from the collection of Betty and Douglas Duffy of the Bethesda Art Gallery include modern works by Sophie Harpe and Nils Gren.


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