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    Description

    JOSEPH HENRY SHARP (American 1859-1953)
    Taos Fishing Trip, circa October 1932
    Oil on canvas
    14 x 17 inches (35.6 x 43.2 cm)
    Signed lower right: JHSHARP
    On verso: original check from Lawrence Slaback endorsed by Joseph Henry Sharp

    Provenance:
    Mr. and Mrs. Lawrence Slaback, purchased directly from artist on October 4, 1932;
    Hazel Risselman, inherited from Slaybacks;
    Descended in family to Jim Risselman

    Joseph Henry Sharp, the father of the Taos art colony, was born in Bridgeport, Ohio, and saw his first Native Americans near Wheeling, West Virginia, just across the Ohio River. He spent his teenage years in Cincinnati, where he studied art at the McMicken School of Design and the Cincinnati Art Academy. Over the course of the 1880s and early 1890s Sharp continued his studies in Munich, Antwerp and Paris. From 1892 to 1902 he taught life drawing and portraiture at the Cincinnati Art Academy. During this period he often ventured west to paint American Indians.

    Sharp made trips to Taos, New Mexico, in 1883 and 1893. From 1902 to 1909, he spent summers in Taos and winters at Crow Agency in Montana. In 1910 he settled permanently in Taos. In the 1930s Sharp traveled to China and Hawaii, and in later years he spent winters in Pasadena, California. Sharp was a founding member of the Taos Society of Artists and received numerous prizes, including a silver medal at the Pan American Exposition of 1901 and a gold medal at the Panama-Pacific Exposition of 1915.

    Important groups of Sharp's paintings are preserved in the collections of the Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of Anthropology, University of California, Berkeley; the Butler Institute of American Art in Youngstown, Ohio; the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, D.C.; the Gilcrease Museum in Tulsa, Oklahoma; and the Stark Museum of Art in Orange, Texas.

    Sharp painted numerous landscapes and outdoor studies in Taos. He adapted a shepherd's wagon as a studio-on-wheelsmaking a skylight of sheet mica. This allowed him to do on-the-spot sketching. The artist's interest in landscape painting had increased in the early years of the century while working in Montana, where he had difficulty finding models who would pose for him. His early landscapes focus on Indian life and tepees. This work may be the painting Frank (Bawling Deer Fishing) that Sharp is reported to have executed in 1932 (Forrest Fenn, The Beat of the Drum and the Whoop of the Dance: A Study of the Life and Work of Joseph Henry Sharp [Santa Fe, New Mexico, Fenn Publishing Company, 1983], p. 3123, no. 1639). An avid fisherman, Sharp enjoyed trout as well as spear fishing, and this work may feature one of his favorite fishing spots in Taos Canyon. In this work he adopts an Impressionist approach :the landscape is bathed in bright and vivid colors. The lush greens, purples and blues of the water are beautifully contrasted with the vivid yellow of the figure's trousers and the yellows and greens of surrounding landscape elements.



    Condition Report*: excellent condition, original unlined canvas, surface intact
    *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, 2007
    24th-25th Thursday-Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 6
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 9,787

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