Jun 30 at 12:00 PM - Sale 2611 -

Sale 2611 - Lot 280

Estimate: $ 25,000 - $ 35,000
REGINALD MARSH
Bathers at Coney Island.

Tempera on illustration board, 1951. 402x505 mm; 15 7/8x20 inches. Signed and dated in tempera, lower right recto.

Provenance: Frank K.M. Rehn Galleries, New York; The Fox Gallery, April 1976; private collection, New York; thence by descent to current owner, private collection, New York.

Born in Paris, the second son in a well-to-do family, Marsh (1898-1954) attended Yale University and then moved to New York where, during the early 1920s, he worked as an illustrator and took classes at the Art Students League. Marsh was equally influenced by his art teachers in New York, notably John Sloan (1871-1951), as well as American Regionalists like Thomas Hart Benton (1889-1975) and Old Masters such as Rubens, Titian and Tintoretto. He wholly rejected the avant-garde artistic movements gaining strength in America at the time—Cubism, Surrealism, Abstraction. Instead he pursued a style that is best summed up as modern social realism: depictions of everyday life in New York, Coney Island beach scenes, vaudeville and burlesque women, the jobless on the streets of New York and the railroad yards and freight trains in New York and New Jersey.

Throughout his career, Marsh returned to the subject of Coney Island and its revelers. He stated: "I like to go to Coney Island because of the sea, the open air, and the crowds—crowds of people in all directions, in all positions, without clothing, moving—like the great compositions of Michelangelo and Rubens."