Ralph Brownell McGrew

Ralph Brownell McGrew


Nationality: American

R. Brownell McGrew once said of his painting technique, "I am an Impressionist in the classical sense. Reality comes from the suggested rather than from the detailed or the finished. My paintings are not exact copies of any of the scenes I see." Ironically, it is Brownell's very attention to detail and to the "finished" composition - he mixed linseed oil and turpentine with his paints to achieve a "fresh-off-the-easel" wet look - that characterizes his exquisite Native American portraits and desert landscapes. A native of Columbus, Ohio, McGrew studied and later taught painting at the Otis Art Institute in Los Angeles before working as a commercial artist for Columbia Pictures and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios. It was on sketching trips into the desert, from California to Arizona to New Mexico, that McGrew befriended Navajo and Hopi Indians, whom he painted with sensitivity to both personal character and physical accuracy, emphasizing, for example, weather-wrinkled skin and tousled grey hair.


Ralph Brownell McGrew Original Art Values Sold at Auction

Item Realized
R. BROWNELL MCGREW (American, 1916-1994) Children of the Sun, 1989 Oil on board 36 x 66 inches (91.4 x 167.6 cm) Sig
R. BROWNELL MCGREW (American, 1916-1994)Children of the Sun, 1989Oil on board36 x 66 inches (91.4 x 167.6 cm)Sig...
Lot 70056
Auction 5095
Saturday, May 5, 2012
PROPERTY OF A PROMINENT TEXAS COLLECTOR  RALPH BROWNELL MCGREW (American, 1916-1994) Lure of the Canyon Acrylic on p
PROPERTY OF A PROMINENT TEXAS COLLECTORRALPH BROWNELL MCGREW (American, 1916-1994)Lure of the CanyonAcrylic on p...
Lot 76314
Auction 5050
Saturday, November 20, 2010
Ralph Brownell McGrew (American, 1916-1994) Song of the Canyon Oil on board 35-1/2 x 30 inches (90.2 x 76.2 cm) Sign
Ralph Brownell McGrew (American, 1916-1994)Song of the CanyonOil on board35-1/2 x 30 inches (90.2 x 76.2 cm)Sign...
Lot 68014
Auction 5227
Monday, November 16, 2015
Ralph Brownell McGrew (American, 1916-1994) Chischille Oil on board 19-1/2 x 15-1/4 inches (49.5 x 38.7 cm) Signed l
Ralph Brownell McGrew (American, 1916-1994)ChischilleOil on board19-1/2 x 15-1/4 inches (49.5 x 38.7 cm)Signed l...
Lot 69035
Auction 5330
Friday, November 3, 2017
RALPH BROWNELL MCGREW (American, 1916-1994) Hosti'in Holtsoie's Daughter, 1979 Oil on panel 20 x 16 inches (50.8 x 40
RALPH BROWNELL MCGREW (American, 1916-1994)Hosti'in Holtsoie's Daughter, 1979Oil on panel20 x 16 inches (50.8 x 40...
Lot 76233
Auction 5116
Saturday, November 10, 2012

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PLEASE NOTE: All prices realized reflect the final hammer price PLUS the buyer's premium in auctions that charge a buyer's premium. Each item has a notation at the top of the listing indicating whether that lot included a buyer's premium. All information listed is intended to be as accurate as possible, but errors are possible. Please use this guide carefully and inform us of any inaccuracies.

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