Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Young Girl with Hand on her Shoulder

"Like a bird before a snake" is a comment by one of the first scholars of miniature painting, made in 1927, about the miniature in the presence of the photograph, meaning fascinated and then swallowed. Actually they influenced each other for decades. Interestingly enough, I came to this craft through the art of hand tinting photographs, being one of the last in a long line of hand tinters working for a 3rd generation photo studio in Charleston. It was just about when the job became defunct in 2003 due to the rise in digital photography, that I started making this series of portraits and so for years, I just drew them and colored the pictures with Marshall's Photo oils. sold.
This painting is copied from a hand painted daguerrotype from the 1800's. It was actually very difficult to translate into an oil painting because it had deep shadows but its so interesting in the light of my process and coming full circle in a way. Available.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Eleanor Parke Custis Lewis(1779-1852)

She was known as Nelly and was the grandaughter of Martha Washington and the step grand of George Washington. When she married George's nephew, Lawrence Lewis, her gift from the Washington's was 2000 acres adjacent to Mt Vernon. She got 80 slaves from her father's estate (John Parke Lewis). Completed September 2012. sold.

William Tecumseh Sherman (1820-1891)

In 1864, Sherman succeeded Grant as the Union commander in the American Civil War. Proponent and practitioner of "total war", Sherman left a grim swath of destruction in his wake throughout Georgia and the Carolinas. Completed in October of 2012. sold

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882)

Professor of modern languages and belles lettres at Harvard, was married to Frances Appleton and lived comfortably in a Georgian Mansion given to the couple by Frances father. He was a very popular poet in his time. Complete in November 2012. sold.

Marie Huger Lowndes (Abt 1832-1915)

Otherwise known as Mrs. Edward Laight Cottenet. Not much else to be known specifically about her but after googling the husbands name I see that Marie has a serious family tree, so many of the prominent Charleston names are there such as Huger, Lowndes, Middleton, Elliot, Harleston, Izard, her mothers father was a senator, her dad's father was a governor and so, as the story goes for all copied miniatures, its all in the lineage. Complete November 2012.

Lea Rose Victoria Jude

This very french looking portrait was originally painted as a watercolor on ivory by John Robinson who was an Englishman who came to Philadelphia in 1817 and exhibited at PAFA regularly. She is otherwise known as Mrs R. V. Hurtel and that's all the information I could find about this. Lea Rose as an oil on trash was complete in November 2012. sold.

Eleanor Britton

The original was a watercolor on ivory by Anna Claypoole Peale painted in 1821. Eleanor was the wife of William Musgrave and that is all the information I could find for her. This was completed in November 2012. sold.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Ameriga Vespucci (1815-1861)

Christened Elena Vespucci,when she arrived in America in 1839, she asserted that she be called Ameriga and that she was the sole descendant of the publicist-explorer who named the continent (Lorenzo de'Medici). She sought entitlement and prepared by attempting to take the states' leading male figures of America one by one. To a large degree she succeeded as she was "as splendid young girl"and many stories of her exploits can be told. She was rewarded with and ease of life, many comforts and lived to a dignified old age when she returned to Paris at 57. Completed 2010. These few graphite drawings were done one winter when I felt more like drawing... NA.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Albert Pike (1809-1891)

Albert Pike was an attorney, confederate officer, writer and Freemason. he was admitted to Harvard, but declined when he was made aware of the cost. Once on an excursion from Missouri to New Mexico, his horse broke and ran and Pike walked 500 miles, the rest of the way to Taos. Later, at the onset of the Civil War, as a 300 pound Arkansas planter who knew several Indian languages, he negotiated the Conferate-Cherokee alliance. In 1905 he was the post judicial officer of the Arkansas Klu Klux Klan. In 1959 he got an honorary MA from Harvard for his poetry (post humous). Interesting fellow. Complete September 2012. sold.

George Washington (1732-99)

General George is father of our country, first prez. Just donated this to Art For Obama., our 44th prez. You can see more about this event at artforobama.wordpress.com. sold

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Lydia Coit Terry

This portrait's original exits in The National Gallery, DC and is by Samuel Morse, c. 1824. She is otherwise known as Mrs Eliphat Terry. Completed in September of 2012.

Commodore Jacob Jones USN (1768-1850)

Jacob Jones was born in Delaware and studied medicine at The University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. He also studied law and was appointed clerk of the Delaware Superior Court befor entering the Navy as a midshipman in 1799. Jones ultimately became one of the most celebrated heroes of the War of 1812. Original by Rembrandt Peale. From catalog, A Gallery Collects Peale by Schwartz Gallery of Phil. This complete September 2012. sold

Boy in Red Coat

This young fellow is copied from a portrait in The National Gallery, DC. I know not his name. Complete September 2012. sold

Young Man of Sad Countenance

The original portrait is in The National Gallery, DC. Completed August 2012. Sold. West Collection

Girl on Yuengling

Original in The National Gallery in DC. This completed in August 2012. Sold. West Collection.

Young Man with Yellow Scarf

Original hangs in The National Gallery in DC. Completed August 2012. Sold.

Girl on Yellow Day Soda

I know very little about who this is except that her portrait hangs in The National Gallery in DC. Completed in August of 2012. Sold. West Collection.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Recovered Delights

The Inventive World of Found Object Sculpture

On view from July 6, 2012 to August 15, 2012 at Snyderman Works Gallery
303 Cherry Street
Philadelphia PA 19106
Tuesday - Saturday, 10 AM - 6 PM
 above: Martha Washington, My White Trash Family by Kim Alsbrooks

The folk art tradition has long intrigued collectors because of its honesty, directness, and use of humble, often scrap, materials. In our own times, collecting of ‘outsider art’, as well as assembling collections of simple, hand- made functional objects from the previous two centuries has also significantly increased.

During the last 20 years, we’ve also observed a lively dialogue by artists using found objects because they represent the opportunity to create witty, tongue in cheek awareness about re-cycling as a positive goal in our culture.  18 artists from many regions of the country were selected to create this large and richly off-beat exhibition expressing the pleasure of the hand that folk art conveys, and the inventiveness that is the hallmark of art-making. The artists are:

Kim Alsbrooks
Harry Anderson
Ellen Benson
Randall Cleaver
Richard Gachot
Chris Giffin
Renee Harris
Linda Lou Horn
Judith Hoyt
Jim Kransberger
Kent Latimer
Pam Lethbridge
Bill Reid
Cathy Rose
Leo Sewell
William Skrips
Stacey Webber
Georgia Zwartjes

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Major General George Pickett (1825-75)

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Lady with Shawl

The original is set in a red leather cover case, dated 1821 and was a miniature by my previous post, Anna Claypoole Peale. This, complete May 2012. Sold. West Collection.

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Anna Claypoole Peale?

Anna Claypoole Peale was originally painted in the period 1808-1810 by the father, James Peale. It is "tentatively identified as Anna, according to the reference, a catalogue, "A Gallery Collects Peale" by Robert Devlin Schwartz. "The portrait might have been conceived as a formal presentation of Anna who had grown to womanhood and within a few years would take over her father's business of painting miniatures." Anna's portraits are some of my favorites. This, complete in May 2012. Sold.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

John Worden

John Worden was the captain of the Union ironclad, the Monitor which fought in a famous battle against the Conferate ironclad on March 9, 1862. It was a draw. Sold.

John Louis Roldolphe Agassiz (1807-1873)

A distinguished Swiss naturalist who came to America in 1846. He was later professor of geology and zoology at Harvard and remained in America the rest of his life. This was completed in April 2012. sold.

Penelope Ogilvy Orde

Originally painted by George Engleheart in 1794. I could find no information on the sitter. Sold.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

George Perkins Marsh (1801-1882)

Marsh helped with the passage of the Smithsonian bill through the House, establishing the institution. His extensive print collection was the first art purchased by the Smithsonian. April 2012. Sold.

S. Dana Greene

Commanded the Union's ironclad, the Monitor after the captain was disabled in the March 9,1862 duel between it and the Confederate ironclad, the Virginia. Complete April 2012. Sold.

David Glasgow Farragut (1801-1870)

David Farragut entered the Civil War with fifty years of naval experience, having taken to the sea as a midshipman at the age of 10. A supremely confident commander, Admiral Farragut inspired the Union with his decisiveness and daring. He issued the command that became legend, "Damn the torpedoes! Full speed ahead!" Depicted here, Lt. Farragut as commanding officer of the sloop Erie in 1938. Completed April 2012. Sold

Friday, April 20, 2012

Mrs. Martha Pawley LaBruce, 1766-1822

I copied this portrait from Charles Fraser, who copied his from Samuel Morse. Painted by Morse at the time of her husbands death, Mrs LaBruce wears the black dress of widowhood. Martha Pawley LaBruce came from two families who held sizable land grants on the Waccamaw (near Charleston), dating back to 1733. She was related through the Pawlies to the Mackies and through the LaBruces to the Allstons and so we're distant cousins (through the Alstons)...as is everyone from the south. Completed April 2012. Sold.

Anne Sherman

The original is a hand colored photograph from 1896, called an opalotype. Interestingly, I began handtinting photos some years before I began the white trash series. The first white trash portraits were painted with Marshals photo oils. I still use them sometimes. Not much is known about the sitter here. Finished April 2012. sold

Monday, April 2, 2012

Thomas Cole (1801-48)

A painter, born in England, the self taught Cole came to America with his parents in 1818 and discovered in the wilderness an inspiration bordering on religious devotion. His landscapes were considered sublimely beautiful and poetic and he was eventually dubbed the founder of the American School of Landscape painting. This portrait was originally painted by Thomas Cummings, close friend of Mr. Cole. Completed 2012. sold.

H. F. Plowden Weston (1738-1827)

A native of England, Weston was a planter at Hagley on the Waccamaw River. He was an active ecclesiologist which may explain his early patronage of a Gothic-style parish church on his property. In addition, he was a bibliophile who printed fine editions and collected manuscripts and books before 1500. original by Charles Fraser, 1824. Considered striking and unique for its portrayal of old age. Graphite on trash, Sold.

Friday, March 30, 2012

Jesse Benton Fremont (1824-1902)

In her memoirs, Jesse recalled that during her childhood she was often at the Capitol with her father, Missouri Senator Thomas Hart Benton, where she was free to browse the Library of Congress books and art plates. She completed her education at Miss English's Female Seminary in Georgetown. Her elopement at 17 to John Charles Fremont, a handsome army surveyor of illegitimate birth, enraged her father but they were forgiven and all was well. She later assisted her husband in writing a popular account of his expeditions on the Oregon Trail. Complete February 2012. sold

Thursday, March 29, 2012

William Samuel Johnston (1795-1883)

Married Laura Woolsey (see portrait titled, Mrs Laura Johnston). Not much more info to be found on this fellow although I suspect he was related to William Samuel Johnston (1727-1819) who was a signer of the Constitution. Both were lawyers from Stratford, Connecticut. Like father, like son, back in the day. Completed December 2011. sold.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Hore Browse Trist (1775-1804)

Hore Browse Trist was the only son of Lt. Nicolas Trist, a British soldier stationed in Philadelphia during the Revolutionary War, and Elizabeth House, the daughter of Quakers.  Hore graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 1792 and began to practice law. In 1799, when the original miniature was painted, he married Mary Brown, later had two sons and moved to Virginia. For the next ten years, Hore was deployed to work in Louisiana and in 1804 the year they were finally united, Hore died of yellow fever. The family was in close ties with Thomas Jefferson, who was a supporter and benefactor. Original by Jean Pierre Henri Louise. Collection of Yale. This, completed February 2012. Sold.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Victor Du Pont (1767-1827)

Victor is a son of Pierre Du Pont de Nemours, a member of the upper tier of the French bourgeois class. The family escaped France and the guillotine and settled in New Jersey for a bit. Victor and his brother Irenee stayed in America while dad returned to France. The boys settled in Delaware and became businessmen. Many ventures later, a gunpowder making business began and from that
the modern day chemical company, Dupont was born. Completed 2010. sold

Young Lady in White

Not alot is

Friday, March 9, 2012

Samuel Bradford (1776-1837)

Original by Rembrandt Peale. Samuel Fisher Bradford was the great great grandson of William Bradford who came to America with William Penn. He introduced printing to the Middle Colonies with the publication of the New York Gazette, the first newspaper published in the Middle Colonies. He also had a large book selling business on the west side of 3rd street below Market Street in Philadelphia until 1816. This white trash painting was done in January of 2012. Snyderman-Works Gallery in Philadelphia. Sold.

Rembrandt Peale (1788-1860)

Original by James Peale, painted in 1795 of his 17 year old nephew Rembrandt Peale. This was a pivotal year for the nephew as this same year Rembrandt's father Charles, founded the Columbianum, later to become the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and turned over his practice in oil portraits and silhouttes to his two oldest sons, Rembrandt and Raphaelle. This completed February 2012. Sold.

Martha Washington (1732-1803)

Informal portrait originally painted by Robert Field in 1801 at Mt Vernon, portrays her as a widow undergoing prolonged mourning, signified by the black ribbon in her cap. Here completed December 2011. Sold

Gen. Winfield Scott (1803-89)

General-in-Chief of the Army (1785-1866) stood six feet, five inches tall and was a magnificent figure in the full military dress he proudly wore. Famous for his insistence on proper military form, including sashes, plumes and medals, he was dubbed "Old Fuss and Feathers". Original c. 1855 by Robert Wier. This completed January 2012. Sold.

Susan Wetherill (1817-57)

Members of the established elite, The prominent Wetherill family emigrated from England in the late 17th century. They contributed to Philadelphia society as founders of the Free Quaker religious movement, which approved of bearing arms in support of the Revolution, and as pioneers in the combined fields of manufacturing and science. At the time this was painted, in 1843, the original artist, George Cushman, was expressing his unrequited love for the sitter, his future wife. Completed February 2012. sold

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Andrew Jackson (1767-1845)

Anna Claypoole Peale limned one of the best known miniatures ever made of a military leader. She painted Andrew Jackson in early 1819 while accompanying her uncle Charles on a painting expedition to Washington. This miniature can be understood in the context of the innumerable images of Washington as honoring a great person who led an exemplary public life. But more controversial.
The planter politician from Tennessee had risen to prominence as a ferocious "indian fighter". His victory in The Battle of New Orleans concluded the War of 1812 and sparked a spirit of nationalism. At he time of this portrait he was under investigation by Congress for his brutal treatment of the Seminoles and his reckless execution of the two British subject who aided the Native Americans. The House vindicated his conduct and this portrait was exhibited at The Phladelphia of Fine Arts in 1819.
Completed February 2012. Sold.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Catherine Bohlen (probably 1830-?)

Catherine Bohlen, here, is the 21 year old daughter of Jane G and John Bohlen, a Philadelphia merchant born in Germany. Seated in profile, the homely yet imposing sitter wears a blue brocade dress with lace pelerine and cameo at her corsage and an ermine stole draped over her shoulders, her hair in a Victorian loop. Original 1850. Collection of Yale.
Completed February 2012. Sold.