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« Juxtaposition | Main | Modern Classicist »

July 13, 2008

Mystery Painting

Donald Pittenger writes:

Dear Blowhards --

We were visiting Spokane and northern Idaho last week, lodging at the Holiday Inn Express in Spokane Valley.

In the lobby were a number of framed prints, including the one below. Sorry about the poor quality, but the lighting was bad when I snapped it and I tried to digitally enhance the image as best I could.

Mystery painting: Title and artist, please.

The scene is of a bunch of rich old gents and sweet young things around a brightly lit table. All are well dressed and seem to be having a swell time chatting things up. From the women's fashions and hairdos, I'd peg the date sometime between 1912 and 1920.

Few critics would consider it a great work of art. However, I found it quite interesting to look at because it attracts and holds one's attention (if one is interested in people, at any rate). It also interested me because it seems skillfully done. For instance, note that the girl on the left is illuminated by two light sources: the yellow table lighting and a daylight source to the left of the scene. The figures are believably posed and nicely drawn. Nothing profound here. No irony or social commentary other than perhaps the age contrast between the sexes and whatever that might suggest. One might consider it a Great War era version of a Watteau.

My biggest problems with it are that I have no idea what the title is and I don't know the name of the painter. Frustrating, because I'm really curious. Do any of you recognize it?



posted by Donald at July 13, 2008


Sort of an uptight version of Renoir's 'Luncheon of the Boating Party.'

Posted by: Don McArthur on July 13, 2008 8:04 PM

Wonderful painting! The color, the dynamic placement of the figures: what life.

Here are some possibilities (slim possibilities) for who might have painted it: Edmund Tarbell; William Glackens; Robert Henri.

But it was most likely a now forgotten society painter's (school of Sargent) work.

Edmund Tarbell, who I discovered googling around, is worth taking a look at in his own right.

Posted by: ricpic on July 14, 2008 10:22 AM

Jules-Alexandre GrĂ¼n

Posted by: S. D'Arbanville on July 15, 2008 11:31 AM

S. D'Arbanville -- That's it! Merci Beaucoup! I doubt that I would ever have discovered Grün on my own.

Ah, the pleasures and perquisites of being second-or-third banana on an arts blog!

Posted by: Donald on July 15, 2008 12:15 PM

Forgot title; Fin de Souper. His posters are really good -- check out Cocorico!

Posted by: S. D'Arbanville on July 15, 2008 12:20 PM

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