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    Description

    Norman Rockwell (American, 1894-1978)
    Fishes Like Neckties, American Magazine interior illustration study, 1934
    Oil on canvas
    31 x 29-3/4 inches (78.7 x 75.6 cm)


    PROVENANCE:
    Sotheby Parke-Bernet, New York, May 29, 1981, lot 198;
    William Doyle Galleries, New York, September 23, 1981, lot 85;
    Private collection, New York, acquired from the above;
    By descent to the present owner.

    LITERATURE:
    L.N. Moffatt, Norman Rockwell: A Definitive Catalogue, vol. II, Stockbridge, Massachusetts, 1986, pp. 594-95, no. S40a, illustrated.

    Fishes Like Neckties is a study for an illustration for Louis H. Cook's story "Fishes Like Neckties," which was published in the May 1934 issue of American Magazine. The story is a fanciful tale of the mostly unsuccessful fishing exploits of the narrator, an avid and insatiable fisherman. He contemplates the angling methods of historical characters, including Izaak Walton and Rip Van Winkle. Walton was an English author who penned The Compleat [sic] Angler, a 17th century account of his own fishing expeditions. Rip Van Winkle is the fictional character created by Washington Irving, who lived, and fished, in the Catskills. Cook writes, "Ike Walton never saw a modern reel nor a braided linen line. Yet he caught a lot of fish, or anyway says he did. Rip Van Winkle, one of the famed fisherman of literature, did his fishing with a long pole cut from the lakeside, and it was probably equipped with a grocery store line, a nail for a sinker, and a three-for-a-penny hook (American Magazine, p. 59)." Perplexed by his own lack of success despite the modern advances in the sport, Cook marvels at these historical characters' success with only limited resources.

    For the present work, Fred Hildebrandt, Rockwell's studio assistant and frequent model during the 1930s, posed as Izaak Walton. Another favorite model for Rockwell during the period, Dave Campion posed as Rip van Winkle.




    Condition Report*: Unlined canvas; craquelure, however, surface is stable; minor stretcher bar marks, most notably at top center edge. Framed Dimensions 38 X 36.5 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
    November, 2017
    3rd Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 5
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