Oct 19, 2023 - Sale 2649

Sale 2649 - Lot 24

Price Realized: $ 8,750
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 8,000 - $ 12,000
CLAUDE CLARK (1915 - 2001)

Oil on wood panel, 1941. 591x369 mm; 23 1/4x14 1/2 inches. Signed in oil, lower right.

Provenance: the artist, Oakland, CA, with his typed label on the verso; thence by descent, private collection.

Playoff is an excellent example of Claude Clark's modernist, impastoed painting of the early 1940s, and a scarce prewar artwork depicting an integrated sports scene. On the verso of the thick panel is a partial woodcut carving.

Clark was an innovative painter and printmaker whose family moved from Alabama to Philadelphia in 1923. After winning a 4 year scholarship to the Pennsylvania Museum and School of Industrial Art, he was supported by Dr. Albert C. Barnes, who gave him access to his famous collection at the Barnes Foundation from 1939-1944. In 1944, his painting Cutting Pattern was just the second art work by an African-American artist accepted into the Barnes Foundation, after one by Horace Pippin. Clark also was a colleague of Dox Thrash and Rayond Steth in the WPA Printmaking Workshop from 1939-1942, where he helped Thrash develop his innovative carborundum etching technique.