Sep 21, 2023 - Sale 2645

Sale 2645 - Lot 131

Price Realized: $ 15,000
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 15,000 - $ 20,000
Youth and Old Age.

Watercolor and pencil on cream wove paper mounted on illustration board, 1926. 230x313 mm; 9 1/8x12 1/4 inches. Signed and dated in ink, lower right recto.

Provenance: Erhard Weyhe, Weyhe Gallery, New York; acquired Christie's, New York, December 8, 1978, lot 266 by the current owner, private collection, New York.

Kent (1882-1971) was a celebrated artist and illustrator who was just as famous for his world voyages. He was born in Tarrytown, New York, the same year as Edward Hopper, grew up just across the Hudson River from Hopper, and enrolled in Columbia University as an architecture student in 1900. He soon abandoned his studies in favor of painting, inspired by his time with William Merritt Chase. He attended the New York School of Art and studied under Robert Henri, who introduced Kent, Edward Hopper and George Bellows, to the artist colony on Mohegan Island, where the young artist remained year-round. His love of nature and solitude brought him to Fox Island off the coast of Seward in Resurrection Bay in 1918, accompanied by his 8 year old son. The pen and ink drawings he refined in Alaska, as well as the illustrated book of his experiences helped to expand his market. With the ultimate goal of sailing around Cape Horn onboard a freighter in 1922, Kent travelled as far as Tierra del Fuego, the trip inspired his second illustrated book. Although he purchased a large farm in Au Sable Forks, New York in 1927, Kent could not be tied to one place. His 1930 book N by E was based on his recent voyage and shipwreck in Greenland, where he returned twice in the 1930s. By the time he was commissioned to illustrate an edition of Herman Melville's Moby Dick, Kent was able to call on his own perilous expeditions for inspiration.