Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice

    Description

    ROBERT SWAIN GIFFORD (American, 1840-1905)
    Menemsha Bight
    Oil on canvas
    15 x 24-1/2 inches (38.1 x 62.2 cm)
    Artist's studio sale stamp verso: R. SWAIN GIFFORD SALE
    Label on upper stretcher: 617

    THE JEAN AND GRAHAM DEVOE WILLIFORD CHARITABLE TRUST

    PROVENANCE:
    S.W. Carey, Jr, West Orange, N.J. (old label verso);
    Skinner Auctioneers, Boston, Massachusetts, American and European Paintings, May 9, 1997, lot 95.

    Close friends and family of Graham Williford recall that he had a photographic memory when it came to works of art. He truly was capable of remembering paintings he had seen years before in museums, in galleries and in auction rooms. Because of this gift he could also remember the particulars of hundreds of works of art he had personally acquired for his own collection, even when they weren't actually on view in any of his residences and in storage. This became a tremendous asset when it came to building upon strengths and themes within his holdings, and his collection is a testament to these "linkages" he pursued between and among the various artists and pictures he acquired.

    The present work by celebrated American landscapist Robert Swain Gifford, for example, relates thematically to the previous work in the auction--William Bradford's view of Martha's Vineyard. The landscape in this painting depicts the curving slice of land, or bight, which defines Menemsha Bay on Martha's Vineyard and separates it from the ocean. (In the 20th century, Menemsha became an important motif for regionalist painter Thomas Hart Benton who maintained a home and studio on Martha's Vineyard.) Moreover, as an aspiring marine painter, Gifford went to New Bedford, Massachusetts in order to train with William Bradford as well as the Dutch-American marine artist, Albert Van Beest, who taught Bradford.



    Condition Report*: Original canvas on original stretcher bars. Under UV, a spot of inpaint in upper sky fluoresces as well as a few patches of inpaint in immediate foreground corner and a line perpendicular to left edge in lower left quadant. Framed Dimensions 20.5 X 30.5 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, 2013
    11th Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 3
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 715

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    25% on the first $50,000 (minimum $14), plus 20% of any amount between $50,000 and $1,000,000, plus 12% of any amount over $1,000,000 per lot.

    Shipping, Taxes, Terms and Bidding
    This item cannot be shipped using standard methods. Please contact us for more information. Sales Tax information

    Important information concerning Sales Tax and Resale Certificates. Learn More

    Terms and Conditions  |  Bidding Guidelines and Bid Increments |  Glossary of Terms

    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 November 22 Ethnographic Art American Indian, Pre-Columbian and Tribal Art Signature Auction - Dallas.

    Learn about consigning with us

    A few months before the Auction we received a beautifully printed Auction Brochure that showed the painting to its best advantage.
    Shauna Y.,
    Dallas, TX
    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