19th & 20th Centuries, American & European Paintings, Sculptures, Prints & Works on Paper Michaan's Auctions is pleased to announce the inaugural 19th & 20th Centuries, American & European Paintings, Sculptures, Prints & Works on Paper Auction led by newly appointed Fine Arts Director, Tho
Another wonderfully understated oil is George Frederick Bensell’s “The Watering Hole” ($3,000-5,000). The landscape scene is painted in shades of sepia and centers naturally formed rocks scattered amongst a declining forest. A misty mountain surrounded by billowing clouds complete the background of the painting. Bensell was well-known for commissioning portraits, landscapes, historical and “poetical genre” subjects for his wealthy clientele. He is also recognized as a cofounder of the Philadelphia Sketch Club, one of America’s oldest existing artists’ groups.
Notable offerings from international artists compose many Fine Sale lots as well. From Spanish painter Emilio Grau Sala is the lively “Paddock en Normandie.” The late 1950s, early 1960s modernism race horse scene is in absolutely pristine condition. Bought from a gallery, it then remained in a private family estate for two generations. The vibrant oil depicts horse race revelers consorting with a jockey as additional jockeys upon horses and patrons mill about the scene. The vivacious brush strokes and vibrant colors bring a palpable energy to the painting; a piece sure to draw strong collector interest ($18,000-26,000).
Wolf von dem Bussche began his career as a painter, but despite the positive response to his work he was never completely fulfilled by the medium. As a result, he made the transition to photography. His sensibilities as a painter remained evident in his photographs as he continued to address thematic issues that interested him in his former career. The German artist is perhaps best known for his images of the World Trade Center Towers in New York City. Michaan’s is pleased to have a portfolio of twelve silver gelatin prints depicting the World Trade Center and Washington Square. The collection provides a reflective tribute to some of von dem Bussche’s most compelling work ($10,000-15,000).
French artist Jehan Georges Vibert’s paintings held quite a prominent following during his career. John Jacob Astor IV and William Vanderbilt included his pieces in their collections and heiress May Louise Maytag amassed a large amount of his paintings on behalf of the then Bishop of Miami, Coleman Carroll. The Maytag accumulation was eventually donated to St. John Vianney College in Miami. “The Cardinal,” depicts a Roman Catholic figure on a garden stroll. The lot includes an informative article of Vibert written by Bill Rau from the “Fine Art Connoisseur,” April 2011 ($15,000-25,000).
Another highlight from a Parisian artist lies in Henri Joseph Harpignies’ “Washing the Laundry” ($6,000-9,000). The realist painting portrays two hand maidens washing laundry in a bucolic lake setting. Harpignies experienced some of his greatest successes at the Salon as a regular exhibitor and award winner. He also completed the decorative panel the Vallée d’Egérie for the Paris Opéra, shown at the Salon of 1870.
A founder of the Artists’ Association of New Orleans, Bror Anders Wikstrom was a Swedish artist who was at the forefront of the New Orleans art scene in the late 19th century. His offering, “Florida Marsh,” depicts grand cypress trees growing in a shaded