Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice

    Description

    Sanford Robinson Gifford (American, 1823-1880)
    Road Scenery Near Lake George, 1849
    Oil on canvas
    20 x 30 inches (50.8 x 76.2 cm)
    Signed and dated lower right: S.R. Gifford 1849

    PROPERTY OF A DISTINGUISHED PRIVATE COLLECTOR, ALPHARETTA, GEORGIA

    PROVENANCE:
    American Art Union, New York;
    H.C. Gray, Painesville, Ohio;
    Vose Galleries, Boston, Massachusetts;
    [With]Johnson Hall Fine Art, Roswell, Georgia;
    Acquired by the present owner from the above;

    EXHIBITED:
    American Art Union, New York, 1849, no. 111.

    LITERATURE:
    American Art Union, exhibition catalogue, New York, 1849, no. 111;
    J.F. Weir, A Memorial Catalogue of the Paintings of Sanford Robinson Gifford, N.A., New York, 1881, p. 15, no. 14.

    According to noted Gifford scholar, Dr. Ila Weiss, in a letter dated February 14, 2000, a copy of which accompanies this lot:

    "This painting is a rare and important example of Gifford's early work. It is well-documented by original drawings and early catalogue entries. It is #14 in the Gifford Memorial Catalogue, published in 1881 by the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, after the artist's death, on the basis of his lost records: 'Road Scenery Near Lake George, 1849, 20 by 30 inches, owned by H.C. Gray, Painesville, Ohio.'

    "In July and August of 1848 Gifford sketched at Lake George and elsewhere in upstate New York. (A fruitful summer's work, several resulting paintings were purchased by the American Art-Union.) Two drawings in a sketchbook owned by Vassar College, Poughkeepsie, New York, were combined for the composition of this painting. (The sketchbook is titled, "1847-8, Marbletown, Catskills, and Lake George," signed 'S R Gifford - Hudson NY Aug 1847,' and measures 5 ¾ by 9 ¼ inches.) A drawing inscribed 'Lake George Aug 6th, 1848' establishes the distance of the painting, the lake with its horizontal strips of islands, the distant hills, even the descending line of woods in the middle distance framing the vista. However, a distant bend of a road leading to farmhouses is replaced in the painting by the fenced horse - also implying human habitation and domestication of the landscape. A drawing inscribed 'Sabbath-day Point Aug 22nd 1848' introduces the left foreground trees, the road with its stones and ruts, the split rail fences (including that of the middle-distant corral minus the horse), and even some dead wood at the road side, but the painting reverses the placement of some of the foreground features and introduces the bold, picturesque shadows.

    "The painting also explores effects of color and atmosphere that characterize Gifford's work almost from the start, and which ultimately dominate his unique artistic vision. The sky holds pink and yellow tinted air against pale azure, masterfully achieved, and into this pearlescent haze the purplish tints of islands and more distant mountains effectively recede. The greens of grass and foliage progress from fresh cool hues in the foreground through warmer, paler middle-distant colors to define the spatial recession, while the dark trees and shadows and brightly highlighted fencing dramatize, by contrast, the delicate, aerial distance which heralds Gifford's incomparable, mature style."


    Condition Report*: wax-lined canvas; there appears to be minor craquelure with a few tiny flakes of loss; however, surface is stable; minor frame wear.
    Framed Dimensions 34 X 43.5 X 3.5 Inches
    *Heritage Auctions strives to provide as much information as possible but encourages in-person inspection by bidders. Statements regarding the condition of objects are only for general guidance and should not be relied upon as complete statements of fact, and do not constitute a representation, warranty or assumption of liability by Heritage. Some condition issues may not be noted in the condition report but are apparent in the provided photos which are considered part of the condition report. Please note that we do not de-frame lots estimated at $1,000 or less and may not be able to provide additional details for lots valued under $500. All lots are sold "AS IS" under the Terms & Conditions of Auction.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    May, 2019
    3rd Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 389

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    25% on the first $300,000 (minimum $49), plus 20% of any amount between $300,000 and $3,000,000, plus 12.5% of any amount over $3,000,000 per lot.

    Sold for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    VIEW BENEFITS
    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
      winnings 
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Consign to the 2019 October 22 Prints & Multiples Signature Auction - Dallas.

    Learn about consigning with us

    The catalogue has some beauties! And your friendship, as well as your excellent work, means a lot too.
    Mara Jayne M.,
    New York, NY
    View More Testimonials

    HA.com receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source: Similarweb.com)

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search

    Recent auctions

    2014 November 21 Tiffany, Lalique & Art Glass Signature Auction
    2014 November 21 Tiffany, Lalique & Art Glass Signature Auction
    REALIZED $1,441,296
    2014 November 17 American Art Signature Auction
    2014 November 17 American Art Signature Auction
    REALIZED $6,712,638
    2014 November 14 American Indian Art , Pre-Columbian, & Tribal Art Signature Auction
    2014 Nov 14 American Indian Art, Pre-Columbian & Tribal Art Auction
    REALIZED $441,524
    2014 November 8 Modern & Contemporary Art Signature Auction
    2014 November 8 Modern & Contemporary Art Signature Auction
    REALIZED $5,683,719
    2014 November 6 Silver & Vertu Signature Auction
    2014 November 6 Silver & Vertu Signature Auction
    REALIZED $439,980
    2014 October 18 The Belo Collection of Texas Art Signature Auction
    2014 October 18 The Belo Collection of Texas Art Signature Auction
    REALIZED $624,835
    2014 October 16 Photographs Signature Auction
    2014 October 16 Photographs Signature Auction
    REALIZED $824,108
    2014 September 28 Nature & Science Signature Auction
    2014 September 28 Nature & Science Signature Auction
    REALIZED $1,089,341
    2014 Sept 13-14 Gentleman Collector Signature Estate Auction
    2014 Sept 13-14 Gentleman Collector Signature Estate Auction
    REALIZED $1,725,292
    2019 April 23 Illustration Art Signature Auction - Dallas
    2019 April 23 Illustration Art Signature Auction - Dallas
    REALIZED $2,477,033