Oct 09, 2014 - Sale 2359

Sale 2359 - Lot 1

Price Realized: $ 2,000
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 1,000 - $ 1,500
It Must Be My Very Star, Come Down to Brooklyn, After All.

Wood engraving on newsprint, circa 1887. 235x165 mm; 9 1/4x6 1/2 inches, full margins (disbound sheet). From Kate Upson Clark, "Old Win-ne-wan's Star", Harper's Young People 9, no. 428, p. 185 (January 10, 1888.) Inscribed "One of father's earliest pictures...sold for 50 dollars" in pencil, lower margin.

Provenance: estate of the artist; collection of Marcia M. Matthews (with her name on a handwritten label); Richard A. Long, Atlanta; thence by descent to his estate. Historian Marcia M. Matthews wrote the standard biography on Tanner in 1969.

Exhibited: The Art of Henry Ossawa Tanner, National Collection of Fine Arts, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC, 1969, with the gallery label.

Another impression is in the Free Library of Philadelphia, and was exhibited in the 2012 retrospective, Henry Ossawa Tanner - Modern Spirit, Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Philadelphia, and illustrated in the catalogue.

This is one of the few known examples of Tanner's early graphic work - this illustration was made while he attended the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. Tanner tried his hand at illustration to make some additional income - he could earn $40-50 for a picture sold to New York publishers. Here Tanner was commissioned to illustrate a scene from a short story in which a girl visits her former pet, a deer, at the Brooklyn zoo. Marley pp. 20 and 175.