Jan 28, 2021 - Sale 2556

Sale 2556 - Lot 102

Price Realized: $ 1,750
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 600 - $ 900
Design study for clock minute hand, circa 1890. Graphite and grey wash on paper with partial hand-inked border. 260x55 mm; 10 1/4x2 1/4 inches, unevenly clipped from larger sheet. Unsigned, but with two penciled indications in Parrish's hand along bottom: "hand of clock / minute" and "not quit[e]."

Provenance: Sotheby's Sale #7197, December 15, 1998, lot 116; thence to private collection, Mississippi.

Parrish's early decorative design work is evident in this mannerist drawing of a minute hand, with a whimsical dolphin whose elongated tail extends into an arrow. The style is similar to those he would later use in The Knave of Hearts by Louise Saunders (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1925.) In a letter by Alma Gilbert, Parrish scholar and Director of the Cornish Colony Gallery & Museum (the Cornish Colony was the New Hampshire artists' colony to which Parrish belonged), to the owner of this work, she writes that he used these designs as the basis for his own utilitarian water gauge which he placed outside his studio work room to let him know at a glance if the water level to the main house reservoir was low, whereupon he would turn a pump switch in the studio to refill it without having to leave. (February 17, 1999).