Jan 25, 2024 - Sale 2657

Sale 2657 - Lot 110

Price Realized: $ 8,750
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 6,000 - $ 9,000

STUART DAVIS (1892-1964)

Landscape, Bass Rocks.
Color screenprint, on wove paper, 1941. 214x302 mm; 8½x11¾ inches, full margins. Edition of 100. Signed in pencil, lower left. Published by Jack Rich, New York, with the original label..

A very good impression with strong colors. Cole/Myers 23.

Davis was an early American modernist painter known for his jazz-influenced paintings--colorful and bold--of the 1940s and 1950s, as well as his Ashcan School pictures in the early years of the 20th century (in 1913 he was one of the youngest artists to exhibit at the groundbreaking Armory Show in New York).

Davis painted murals for Federal Art Project of the Works Progress Administration that are influenced by his love of jazz. In 1932, Davis executed a mural commission for Radio City Music Hall, New York, which the Rockefeller Center Art Committee called Men Without Women (after Ernest Hemingway's second collection of short stories completed the same year), that still currently hangs at Radio City Music Hall downstairs men's lounge. In 1938, Davis painted Swing Landscape, a modernist mural now considered one of the most important American paintings in the 20th-century (on permanent display in the Eskenazi Museum of Art at Indiana University, Bloomington). He painted another important work, Mural for Studio B, WNYC, Municipal Broadcasting Company, 1939, for one of the main recording studios at New York's public radio station (currently in the collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York). At the dedication for this mural, Davis spoke, "I say it is of crucial cultural importance when a city institution like the Municipal Broadcasting Company comes forward in sponsorship of abstract art. It is in harmony with the broad democratic cultural policy of WNYC."

Based on the oil painting by Davis Bass Rocks, No. 1, 1939, now in the collection of the Wichita Art Museum. The composition was developed based on observation of an area of the Atlantic coastline between Gloucester and Cape Ann, Massachusetts where Davis' family summered every year.