JOHN HENRY TWACHTMAN
"THE LANDING, NEWPORT"
Signed 'J.H. Twachtman' bottom left, oil on cradled panel
7 5/8 x 12 in. (19.4 x 30.5cm)
Executed circa 1889.
The Estate of the Artist.
Acquired directly from the above.
Collection of Albert Milch, New York, New York, 1928.
The Milch Galleries, New York, New York.
Acquired directly from the above in 1953.
Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Meyer Potamkin.
Sotheby's, New York, "American Paintings, Drawings & Sculpture from the Collection of Meyer and Vivian Potamkin," sale of May 21, 2003, lot 52.
Acquired directly from the above sale.
Collection of Dorrance H. Hamilton.
The Milch Galleries, New York, New York, February 1928.
"The M.P. Potamkin Collection," The Dallas Museum of Fine Arts, Dallas, Texas, January-March 1970, no. 70 (exhibited as "Gloucester Pier").
"An Alumnus Salutes Dickinson College 200th Anniversary" (From the Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Meyer Potamkin), William Penn Memorial Museum, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, November 1972-January 1973, no. 150, p. 55 (exhibited as "Gloucester Pier").
Lisa N. Peters, John Twachtman (1853-1902) and the American Scene in the Late Nineteenth Century: The Frontier within the Terrain of the Familiar, Ph.D. dissertation, City University of New York, New York, 1995, p. 260, pp. XXVIII and XXIX, 260, 798 (illustrated).
Mary Welsh Baskett, John Henry Twachtman: American Impressionist Painter as Printmaker: A Catalogue Raisonné of His Prints, M. Hausberg, Bronxville, New York, 1999, p. 118.
American Impressionist John Henry Twachtman was born in 1853 in Cincinnati. He trained under portraitist Frank Duveneck (1848-1919) before moving to Europe in 1875 to continue his studies at the Academy of Fine Arts in Munich. He returned to Europe again in 1883, this time to study at the Académie Julian in Paris. It was during this trip that his artistic style matured; his paintings shifted from the loose brushstrokes of his German education towards a softer, tonalist style, with an emphasis on more muted grays and greens. Upon his return from Europe, Twachtman established himself in Greenwich, Connecticut, joining the art colony at Cos Cob. He expanded his use of media, creating many etchings and pastels in addition to his traditional oil paintings. He made several trips to Gloucester, Massachusetts, the Cape Ann fishing town, and Newport, Rhode Island, the seaside summer resort famed for its opulent summer "cottages" built for pioneering American businessmen. Twachtman became a professor at the Art Students League in 1889, and taught there until his death in 1902.
His paintings of Greenwich, as well as Gloucester and Newport, display a deep appreciation for the quietude of New England life. Executed circa 1889, when Twacthman visited Newport to give art lessons to a woman who ran a school there, "The Landing, Newport" employs the artist's preferred palette of muted earth tones to depict a pier along the waterfront. The rough approximations of the wooden pillars supporting the structure, their reflections rippling along the water in tight curves, dominate the scene. The rooftops in the background, awash in shades of brown and terracotta tan - the lone exception being a conspicuous pale periwinkle blue swath - stagger into the distance. A small group of figures stands on the pier, forming a distinct and yet featureless shape leaning over the rail towards the water. In an etching Twachtman produced after the painting, the scene is reversed, and the artist has removed the cluster of figures. The etching was described as "a sketch of part of the Long Wharf from the harbor."
This painting will be included in the forthcoming Catalogue Raisonné of the artist's work by Lisa N. Peters, Ph.D. We wish to thank Dr. Peters for her kind assistance in cataloguing this lot.
Sold for $33,750 (buyer's premium included)