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Estimate: $ 20,000 - $ 30,000
HAYWOOD 'BILL' RIVERS (1922 - 2001) The Dance.
Oil on linen canvas, circa 1955-59. 635x762 mm; 25x30 inches. Signed in pencil across the verso.
Provenance: the artist, Paris; James and Laura M. Kleege, New York; thence by descent, private collection, Indiana; private collection, New York, acquired at Swann Galleries, February 3, 2010.
Exhibited: Louis B. Comfort Tiffany Foundation, New York, with the label on the frameback. With the artist's name, address, the artist's agent, Gallery Parma, and its address and the name of the owner, James Kleege, handwritten on the printed label. Parma Gallery exhibited other abstract painters such as George Dunbar, Robert Klippel and Felrath Hines in the mid to late 1950s.
The Dance is a wonderful mid-century abstraction by this overlooked artist. This is the earliest abstract painting by Haywood Rivers that we have been able to locate. After returning from Paris in 1952, the artist continued to be inspired by Henri Matisse, which is particularly evident in his abstract painting with its flat areas of pattern and color.