DescriptionFROM THE COLLECTION OF SUSAN & ALLEN COLES
CHRISTOPHER BLOSSOM (American, b.1956)
The Vicennes and Porpoise, 1981
Oil on canvas
26 x 39 inches (66.0 x 99.1 cm)
Signed lower right: Christopher Blossom / 1981
Christopher Blossom may be unique among gold-medal winners at the National Academy of Western Art in that he is first and foremost a Northeastern marine painter. A native of Norwalk, Connecticut, Blossom spent his teen years crewing boats from Connecticut to Maine and studying marine painting in the footsteps of his father and grandfather. His early commercial training at New York's Parsons School of Design and the Industrial Design Studio of Robert Bourke influenced his appreciation of ship design, and in the 1970s he became a charter member of the American Society of Marine Artists. Vacations to Colorado and Wyoming first interested Blossom in the Western landscape, and his paintings of this region have earned him recognition in Southwest Art and Art of the West, as well as a 1991 gold medal at the NAWA and the 2001 Robert Lougheed Memorial Award at the Prix de West Invitation. Demonstrating Blossom's continued fascination with historical ships, The Vincennes and Porpoise depicts two of the major ships from the United States Exploring Expedition, or Wilkes Expedition, of 1838-42, which traversed the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans in search of commercial opportunities, new territories, and geological and botanical specimens for scientific study. Here, Blossom captures the dramatic moment leading up to Captain Charles Wilkes's discovery of Antarctica, as the flagship Vincennes, a 780-ton war sloop, and the Porpoise, a 230-ton brig, first encounter massive icebergs.
Original stretcher; no evidence of inpainting or restoration; very good condition. Framed to an overall size of 32.5 x 45 inches.
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2017 October 13 Illustration Art Signature Auction - Dallas