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AMERICAN MODERNISM 1915 – 1985


Cover : Ralph De Burgos (American, 1906-1979) The Eyes Have It, 1972 Acrylic on canvas 36 H. x 36 W. inches Signed and titled verso Page 2: Milton Avery (American, 1885-1965) Tender Trees, 1955 Oil, crayon, and watercolor on paper 23 1/8 H. x 17 Âź W. inches Signed and dated upper right: Milton Avery 1955


American Modernism 1915 - 1985

May 1 - June 28, 2019

34 East 67th Street, New York, NY 10065 212.535.5767 | info@grahamshay.com grahamshay.com


We are proud to present the exhibition “American Modernism, 1915 - 1985,” framing numerous pivotal moments in American art, when tastes shifted from representational art to gestural then geometric abstraction and beyond. The exhibition features selections that are as diverse as America itself. Covering the greater part of the twentieth century, the exhibit highlights examples from some of the century’s most respected artists, from Milton Avery and Marsden Hartley to Louise Nevelson and John Chamberlain. All of the artists on view exhibited regularly and were well known in their day. Other familiar figures include Walt Kuhn, John Marin, Elie Nadelman, and William Zorach. We’re also pleased to be bringing attention to artists Ernest Briggs, Fritz Bultman, Ralph De Burgos, Jose De Creeft, Robert Engman, Bertram Hartman, Sewell Sillman, Kimber Smith, Benedict Tatti and Wheeler Williams, all of whom had remarkable standing in their respective careers. The selected works include paintings, watercolors, and drawings, and, as the Gallery is known for specializing in sculpture, we are presenting examples in a variety of styles and materials, including cast bronze, carved stone and fabricated objects. Broadly speaking, the works in this exhibition can be divided into two groups: representational and abstract. Works that disparate in style, however, can offer surprising similarities. A traditional scene of a house on a hillside by Bertram Hartman is dramatically different than Sewell Sillman’s pared-down minimalist canvas, whose title, The Palace (Version 2), merely suggests an edifice. Similarly, Benedict Tatti’s roughly hewn marble Head of 1960 is far more literal than Kimber Smith’s abstract painting Face with Pink Background of 1980, which requires a leap of imagination to discern facial features. And while Walt Kuhn’s Young Woman with Crown and Cornucopia of 1937 seems to have nothing in common with an untitled abstract painting from 1956 by Theodore Stamos, both works share a concern with color, form, and a figure/ground relationship. From the earliest work on view, a cast bronze bull by Elie Nadelman, to the latest, a sliced aluminum mailbox by Chamberlain, the exhibit showcases the depth and breadth of American modern art.


Marsden Hartley (American, 1877-1943) Lemons and Oranges, 1929

Oil on board, 13 H. x 21 ½ W. inches Signed and dated verso: “Marsden Hartley / 1929” Private Collection


Louise Nevelson (American, 1899-1988) Young Tree XXIV, 1971

Wood assemblage, paint 19 他 H. x 6 他 W. x 5 他 D. inches Affixed to artist base, overall height: 55 他 inches


Elie Nadelman (American, 1882-1946) The Bull, 1915

Bronze, brown patina 6 5/8 H. x 11 Ÿ W. x 3 ½ D. inches Mounted to original onyx base, 2 H. inches Cast circa 1917


Theodore Stamos (Greek-American, 1922-1997) Untitled, 1956

Oil on canvas, 54 H. x 48 W. inches Signed lower left: Stamos Signed and dated on overlap: T. Stamos 1956


Walt Kuhn (American, 1877-1949) Young Woman with Crown and Cornucopia, 1937 Oil on canvas, 40 H. x 30 W. inches Signed and dated lower left: Walt Kuhn 1937


John Chamberlain (American, 1927-2011) Sliced Aluminum, 1992

Mailbox, paint 26 ¾ H. x 12 ¼ W. x 12 ¼ D. inches Signed on mailbox door: Chamberlain Unique This original sculpture was created on the occasion of the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution benefit, Mailbox Auction, November 19, 1992, lot 26. The original benefit auction catalogue, correspondence and documentation will accompany the artwork.


Robert Engman (American, 1927-2018) Three Warped Circles, 1985 Bronze, green patina, on marble base 27 H. x 29 ¾ W. x 23 ½ D. inches Edition of 8 casts


Sewell Sillman (American, 1924-1992) The Palace (Version 2), 1961

Oil on masonite, 33 ž H. x 45 W. inches Signed and inscribed on verso: S. Sillman, The Palace (Version #2), 1961 Robert Engman and Sewell Sillman were both students of Josef Albers at Yale. They became professors at Yale under Albers and later went on to collaborate at the University of Pennsylvania.


Bertram Hartman (American, 1882-1960) Shoreline at Stonington, on Deer Isle, Maine, 1927 Oil on canvas laid to board 16 ½ H. x 20 ž W. inches Signed lower left: Bertram Hartman Signed and inscribed verso


Kimber Smith (American, 1922-1981) Face with Pink Background, 1980 Acrylic on canvas 24 H. x 22 W. inches Signed lower left: KS


Benedict Tatti (American, 1901-1983) Head, c. 1960

Marble. Signed: TATTI 11 ¾ H. x 5 ½ W. x 6 ½ D. inches Mounted on original wood base, 6 ½ H. inches


Frederick Buchholz (American, 1901-1983) Untitled, circa 1927 Oil on canvas 16 H. x 12 W. inches


Exhibition Checklist Milton Avery, Tender Trees, 1955, oil, crayon, and watercolor on paper, 23 1/8 H. x 17 ¼ W. inches Milton Avery, Inlets, 1957, ink on paper, 11 H. x 8 ½ W. inches Ernest Briggs, Interiors, 1979, oil on canvas, 40 H. x 31 ¾ W. inches Frederick Buchholz, Untitled, c. 1927, oil on canvas, 16 H. x 12 W. inches Frederick Buchholz, Untitled, 1927, oil on canvas, 30 H. x 20 W. inches Fritz Bultman, Dialogue of the Hills, 1957, oil and pencil on panel, 18 H. x 22 ¾ W. inches John Chamberlain, Sliced Aluminum, 1992, mailbox, paint, 26 ¾ H. x 12 ¼ W. x 12 ¼ D. inches Ralph De Burgos, The Eyes Have It, 1972, acrylic painting on canvas, 36 H. x 36 W. inches Jose De Creeft, Ecstasy, 1956, alabaster, 15 H. x 15 W. x 10 D. inches Robert Engman, Three Warped Circles, 1985, bronze, green patina, marble base, 27 H. x 29 ¾ W. x 23 ½ D. in. Marsden Hartley, Lemons and Oranges, 1929, oil on academy board, 13 H. x 21 ½ W. inches Bertram Hartman, Shoreline at Stonington, on Deer Isle, Maine, 1927, oil on canvas, 16 ½ H. x 20 ¾ W. in. Walt Kuhn, Young Woman with Crown and Cornucopia, 1937, oil on canvas, 40 H. x 30 W. inches John Marin, City Movement, 1940, watercolor on paper, 10 ½ H. x 15 W. inches Clement Meadmore, Branching Out, 1981, bronze on Lucite base, 5 ¼ H. x 8 W. x 6 ½ D. inches Seymour Meyer, The Kiss, c. 1970, polished bronze, 20 ¼ H. x 7 ¼ W. x 7 3/8 D. inches Elie Nadelman, The Bull, 1915, bronze with brown patina, 6 5/8 H. x 11 ¼ W. x 3 ½ D. inches Louise Nevelson, Young Tree XXIV, 1971, wood assemblage, 19 ¾ H. x 6 ¾ W. x 5 ¾ D. inches Louise Nevelson, Dark Cryptic XLIII, 1976, black painted wood, 4 H. x 10 W. x 8 ½ D. inches Louise Nevelson, Untitled (Day Stops), c. 1945, pencil on paper, 12 H. x 9 W. inches Louise Nevelson, Head, c. 1945, cast tattistone and pigment, 6 1/8 H. x 8 ½ W. x 5 3/8 D. inches Phillip Pavia, Untitled, 1971, marble, limestone, & granite on a wood base, 14 3/8 H. x 13 ½ W. x 11 7/8 D. inches Beverly Pepper, Untitled, c. 1970, steel and enamel, 6 H. x 6 ½ W. x 4 ¾ D. inches Irene Rice Pereira, Untitled, 1956, gouache on paper, 7 ¾ H. x 5 1/3 W. inches Sewell Sillman, The Palace (Version 2), 1961, oil on masonite, 33 ¾ H. x 45 W. inches Sewell Sillman, Red, c. 1958, oil on masonite, 18 H. x 36 W. inches Sewell Sillman, Green, c. 1958, oil on masonite, 21 ½ H. x 28 W. inches Sewell Sillman, Sketch: Thing in Itself, 1970, acrylic on masonite, 33 ¾ H. x 33 ¾ W. inches Sewell Sillman, Study for: Eclipse (Autumnal), 1971, acrylic on masonite, 31 ¼ H. x 31 ¼ W. inches Kimber Smith, Face with Pink Background, 1980, acrylic on canvas, 24 H. x 22 W. inches Kimber Smith, Red Rose, 1980, acrylic on canvas, 36 H. x 12 W. inches Kimber Smith, Silver Sun, 1967, acrylic on canvas, 28 H. x 24 W. inches Kimber Smith, Untitled, 1971, acrylic on canvas, 24 H. x 8 W. inches Kimber Smith, Mediterranean, 1979, acrylic on canvas, 10 H. x 13 W. inches Kimber Smith, Untitled (Study for M.G.S.), 1972, watercolor on paper, 19 7/8 H. x 14 7/8 W. inches Theodore Stamos, Untitled, 1956, oil on canvas, 54 H. x 48 W. inches Benedict Tatti, Head, c. 1960, marble, 11 ¾ H. x 5 ½ W. x 6 ½ D. inches Benedict Tatti, Scrap Assemblage, c. 1960’s, steel and paint, 24 H. x 8 ½ W. x 7 D. inches Benedict Tatti, Totem, c. 1955, white Vermont marble with wood base, 49 H. x 5 ½ W. x 2 ¼ D. inches Helen Torr, Veneer and Grapes, 1930-1931, oil on board, 27 H. x 19 7/8 W. inches Wheeler Williams, Flight of the Arrow, 1939, gilt bronze (unique), 23 ¾ H. x 21 ½ W. x 8 ½ D. inches William Zorach, Sleeping Cat, bronze mounted on wood base, 2 3/8 H. x 6 3/8 W. x 5 D. inches William Zorach, The Dream, 1949, pink marble, 9 H. x 12 W. x 5 ¼ D. inches


This catalogue is published on the occasion of the exhibition: MODERNIST AMERICAN PAINTINGS AND SCULPTURE 1915 to 1985 Held at Graham Shay 1857, May 1 - June 28, 2019

© 2019 Graham Shay, Inc. New York All works in this exhibition are subject to prior sale

Curated by: Cameron M. Shay and Douglas Gold Entries: Cameron Shay, Douglas Gold, Clanci Jo Conover With thanks: Stephanie Cash Design: Clanci Jo Conover and Carla De Miranda Photography: Clanci Jo Conover Printing: Variable Graphics LLC, New York

34 East 67th Street, New York, NY 10065 212.535.5767 | info@grahamshay.com grahamshay.com


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American Modernism | Graham Shay 2019  

American Modernism | Graham Shay 2019