Friday 9 December 2016

American Folk Art - part 21

Concluding a major series on American Folk Art featuring 21 postings. Folk Art encompasses art produced by artists and ordinary folk with little or no training in the arts, and is traditionally utilitarian and decorative rather than purely aesthetic. The period I’m covering is the C18th and C19th.
See parts 11-20 also for earlier works.

Note: Follow me on Twitter for notice of updates @poulwebb

This is part 21 of a 21-part post on American Folk Art:

In this final part of the series I'm featuring a number of artists where I could only find a few examples of their work - all in single figures and some with only one example, but a fitting cross-section with which to end the series.

Mary B. Tucker (1784 - 1853)

1840-44c Learning the ABCs
graphite and watercolour on paper 23.5 x 58.4 cm
Folk Art Museum, New York City

1840-50c Girl in Calico
watercolour, brush and brown ink, and graphite on cream wove paper 61.3 x 48 cm
Princeton University Art Museum, NJ

1840c ( attributed to ) Two Children in Blue
watercolour and graphite on paper

1843 Portrait of a Boy Holding an Orange
watercolour and pencil on paper 55.9 x 46.3 cm

n.d. Portrait of a Young Boy in a Blue Coat
watercolour and ink on paper  66 x 47.6 cm

n.d. Portrait of a Young Girl
watercolour and ink on paper 48.3 x 36.2 cm

Samuel Miller (1807 - 1853)

1840-50 ( attributed to ) Picking Flowers
oil 114.3 x 71.1 cm

1840c Portrait of Cynthia Osborn

1850c Portrait of Phoebe Francis Ricker
oil on canvas 89.5 x 72.4 cm

1850c Young Boy with a Dog
oil on canvas
de Young / Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, CA

1850c Young Girl with Flowers
oil on canvas
de Young / Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, CA

1852 Emily Moulton
oil on canvas 103.5 x 70.2 cm
Currier Museum of Art, Manchester, NH

n.d. Girl Teasing a Cat

William W. Kennedy (1818 - after 1870)

1840-45c Portrait of a Young Woman
oil on board 41.3 x 31.1

1840c Little Girl with Her Black Cat
oil on canvas 81.3 x 68.6 cm

1845 Captain David Worth aged 72 (1773-1855)
oil on board 40.6 x 30.5 cm

1845 Portrait of a Young Lady
50.8 x 36.8 cm

1846 Portrait of a Woman Wearing a White Ruffled Bonnet
oil on canvas 61 x 50.8 cm

n.d. ( attributed to ) Portrait of a Child Wearing a Pink Dress and Holding a Hairbrush
oil on canvas 76.2 x 63.5 cm

n.d. ( attributed to ) Portrait of a Girl
oil on canvas 70 x 56.2 cm

n.d. ( attributed to ) Portrait of Child in Blue with a Cane
oil on board

n.d. Portrait of a Young Boy
oil on canvas 50.2 x 40 cm

Jacob Bailey Moore (1797 - 1853)

1840 ( possibly by Jacob Bailey Moore )
Portrait of a Young Girl in a Red Dress o
il on mattress ticking 62.2 x 48.3 cm

1845c Portrait of a Gentleman
oil on canvas 68.7 x 56.2 cm

1845c Portrait of a Lady
oil on canvas 68.7 x 56.2 cm

William Jr. Lydston (1813 - )

1847 Portrait of a Young Boy
oil on canvas 105.4 x 87.6 cm

Charles V. Bond ( 1825c - 1864c )

1856 Still Life: Fruit, Bird, and Dwarf Pear Tree
oil on canvas 63.5 x 76.5 cm
National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC

1860c Julie Tevis
oil on canvas 88.9 x 71.1 cm
Filson Historical Society, Louisville, KT

1860c Reverend John Tevis
oil on canvas 88.9 x 71.1 cm
Filson Historical Society, Louisville, KT

Frederick Elmore Cohen (dates not found)

1846c Near Old Post Office, Detroit
oil on canvas mounted on board 50.2 x 60.3 cm
Private Collection

1850c Portrait of Two Children and Their Bloodhound
109.2 x 96.5 cm

1857c Bentley Simons Runyan Family of Mansfield, Ohio
oil 96.5 x 114.3 cm
Allen Memorial Art Museum, Oberlin, Ohio

n.d. Self-Portrait
71.1 x 61 cm

Lambert Sachs (1818 - 1903)

Lambert Sachs


1850c Portrait of a Young Boy and Girl
oil on canvas 124.5 x 101.6 cm

1857 The Herbert Children
oil on canvas 63.3 x 80.3 cm
National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC

1887 Dark-Haired Girl Sitting in a Garden
40.6 x 33 cm

n.d. George Washington in Prayer at Valley Forge

Daniel McDowell (1809 - 1880)

1860-80c Watermelon Wedges on a White Cloth
oil on canvas 43.2 x 62.2 cm
Private Collection

Joe Miller, Linn Co., Oregon (dates not found)

1870c Our Country Is Free!
watercolour and gouache on paper 34.3 x 24.2 cm

J.W. Bradshaw (active 1875c - 1900)

1875-1900 Plains Indian
oil on canvas 51 x 40 8 cm
National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC

W.H. Brown (active 1886 - 1887)

1886 Bareback Riders
oil on cardboard mounted on wood 47 x 62.2 cm
National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC

Charles C. Hofmann (1820 - 1882) and 
John Rasmussen (1828 - 1895)

Charles C. Hofmann was born in Germany around 1820, and emigrated to America in 1860. In subsequent years he lived in several communities along Pennsylvania's Schuylkill River, sometimes as a resident/patient of the public poorhouses. He is the best-known of the three so-called "Pennsylvania Almshouse Painters," the other two being Louis Mader and John Rasmussen.

The Berks County institution in Reading was the one which the artist entered with the greatest frequency; its records list his reason for admittance as "intemperance." His stays there do not seem to have been rehabilitative--one source reported that "it was his wont on visiting days, to approach visitors and beg a few pennies to 'help put something in his bottle' for which he will paint for you, a pretty picture." Most of Hofmann's known works, however, were painted for staff members and officers of the institutions depicted.
In addition to the almshouse views painted throughout the 1870s, Hofmann produced at least six other landscapes. In November 1881 Hofmann was admitted to the Berks County Almshouse with a broken arm. He died there five months later and was buried in the indigent's graveyard.
John Rasmussen was born in Germany in 1828 and arrived in America in 1865. He is listed as a painter and "fresco painter" in the Reading, Pennsylvania, business directories during the years 1867 to 1879. Widowed and suffering from chronic drinking problems and rheumatism, Rasmussen was committed to the Berks County almshouse on June 5, 1879. He arrived roughly three years before the death of painter Charles Hofman, a fellow inmate. 

Possibly inspired by the attention Hofmann had received for his painted landscapes and views of the institution, or perhaps as a result of a comaraderie between the two painters, Rasmussen produced almshouse views and other landscapes similar in composition to those of the elder Hofmann during the period of their joint residency. Rasmussen is known to have painted a wider range of subjects than did Hofmann, including portraits, still lifes, various landscapes, baptismal certificates, and, beginning in 1880, at least six views of the almshouse. In all of these, Rasmussen closely followed Hofmann's 1878 composition of the institution, which hung in one of the administrative buildings of the complex.

Charles C. Hofmann: Berks County Almshouse, 1878
oil on zinc 82.5 x 99.6 cm
National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC

John Rasmussen 1880c: View of Buildings and Surroundings of the Berks County Alamshouse
oil and gold paint on zinc panel 81.9 x 101.6 cm

John Rasmussen 1881:  Berks County Almshouse
oil 66.9 x 116.8 cm
Fenimore Art Museum

John Rasmussen: Berks County Farm-scape
oil on zinc-plated tin 66.9 x 89.8 cm