Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice
Heritage is in the process of relocating its world headquarters to a new Dallas area location, which will be announced soon. Please call 214-528-3500 to confirm all Heritage appointments, events or deliveries in Dallas, as our departments and staff are moving at different times from separate locations.
IMPORTANT: In-person floor bidding is temporarily suspended and our offices are closed, except for scheduled appointments. See details including all options for bidding remotely.



    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.

    Condition Report*: Original stretcher; no evidence of inpainting or restoration; very good condition.  Framed to an overall size of 32.5 x 45 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, 2010
    20th Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 2,256

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    19.5% of the successful bid (minimum $14) 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)
    Track Item

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    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
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Consign to the 2020 November 14 Silver & Vertu Signature Auction - Dallas.

    Learn about consigning with us

    I am not only a happy first-time consignor, I will be returning! Thank you for the wonderful experience.
    John Paul R.,
    Chicago, IL
    View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source:

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search