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    Birger Sandzén (American, 1871-1954)
    The Mighty Peak, Longs Peak, Estes Park, Colorado, 1937
    Oil on Masonite
    22 x 28 inches (55.9 x 71.1 cm)
    Signed lower left: Birger Sandzén
    Signed, dated, titled, and inscribed on the reverse: The Mighty Peak / Longs Peak, Colo. / Birger Sandzén / Lindsborg, Kansas / Estes Park, Colo. / 1937

    Property From An Important New England Estate

    Birger Sandzén's The Mighty Peak, Longs Peak, Estes Park, Colorado, a study for The Great Peak (Longs Peak) at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City, epitomizes the magisterial Colorado subjects that catapulted him to national acclaim. Weary of the sweltering summers in his Kansas hometown, the artist began traveling to Colorado in 1908, a tradition he continued for over thirty years. Colorado's dramatic rocky terrain and expansive skies allowed Sandzén to master his Impressionistic technique of choppy and impastoed brushwork, graphic light-dark patterns, and bold palette.

    In July 1937, Sandzén traveled to Estes Park to paint Longs Peak, the tallest site in Rocky Mountain National Park and a popular tourist attraction, named after expedition leader Major Stephen H. Long of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. One of Sandzén's Kansas City patrons, Mrs. Ethel Greenough Holmes, encouraged him to capture the range from the viewpoint of Longs Peak Inn, focusing on the treacherously steep eastern face dubbed "The Diamond." During the next month, Sandzén completed in his Colorado studio three similar studies of Longs Peak for Mrs. Holmes: one with an entire grove of pine trees; the present lot, with active, sweeping trees; and a third with three lone trees. She purchased the last option and then commissioned him to paint a larger version, which she gifted to the Nelson-Atkins. At the reception for the presentation of The Great Peak (Longs Peak) to the museum in 1938, the artist met and enjoyed talking with John Steuart Curry for the first time. Also attending the reception were Thomas Hart Benton and Grant Wood, the other leaders of the Regionalist movement, who admired Sandzén's work and his celebration of the American landscape.

    We wish to thank Cori Sherman North, Curator of the Birger Sandzén Memorial Gallery, Lindsborg, Kansas, for her invaluable cataloguing assistance. The Mighty Peak, 1937, is recorded as #1646 in the Sandzén card catalogue of the Birger Sandzén Memorial Gallery.

    More information about Birger Sandzén, also known as Sandzén, Birger, Sandzen, Birger, Sandzén, Sven Birger, Sandzen, Sven Birger, Sven Birger Sandzen, Birger Sandzén.

    Estimate: $30,000 - $50,000.

    Condition Report*: Under UV exam, there does not appear to be inpaint. Extremely fine craquelure in areas of thicker pigment, most noticeable in the upper left quadrant.
    Framed Dimensions 27 X 33 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. Heritage does not guarantee the condition of frames and shall not be liable for any damage/scratches to frames, glass/acrylic coverings, original boxes, display accessories, or art that has slipped in frames. All lots are sold "AS IS" under the Terms & Conditions of Auction.

    Auction Info

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