Revere Auctions
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January Day 1: Around the World in 365 Lots

Tue, Jan 24, 2023 11:00AM EST
Lot 339

Robert Vonnoh Impressionist Landscape Painting

Estimate: $6,000 - $8,000

Bid Increments

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Robert Vonnoh (American, 1858-1933). Impressionist oil on canvas laid board painting titled "Village Church," depicting a small village nestled amongst lush green hills with a small stream curving through the fields. Signed along the lower right; titled along the verso.

Lot Essay:
Robert Vonnoh was one of the first American artists to bring European Impressionism to the United States. A celebrated Impressionist landscape and portrait painter and a respected teacher, Vonnoh influenced many American artists. His students included William Glackens, Robert Henri and John Sloan, who would later form the influential Ashcan school.

Vonnoh was born in Hartford, Connecticut and studied at the Massachusetts Normal Art School, following his practice at the public schools with a lithography shop. Upon graduation, he started his teaching career at his alma mater and shared his pioneering artistic skills at multiple other institutions that include Roxbury Evening Drawing school, East Boston Evening Drawing School, the Cowles Art School, the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in Philadelphia.

In 1881, Vonnoh made the first of many trips to France and enrolled in the Academi Julian in Paris. Studying under Gustave Boulanger and Jules-Joseph Lefebvre, he continued improving upon his artistic skills, fully immersing himself into the prestigious art scene of Paris. After two years, he returned to his teaching career in Boston. Shortly after his marriage to his first wife Grace D. Farrell, he returned to live and work in France between 1887 and 1890.

Settling in Grez, France, he began exploring the revolutionary technique of impressionism, which later became his representative style. Between 1887 and 1890, his adoption of the impressionistic aesthetic peaks in his paintings; however, like most American artists' works, his paintings do not show the complete dissolution of forms into pure light and color as is echoed in the works of his French counterparts. Many of his paintings at this time were accepted into the Paris Salon; others were sent to the U.S. for exhibitions. Vonnoh returned to the U.S. in 1891 and continued his teaching career at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, until 1894, with notable students in Robert Henri, William Glackens, and Maxfield Parrish. He remarried in 1899 to an American sculptor Bessie O. Potter after his first wife's death. Beginning in 1906, Vonnoh spent summers in Old Lyme, CT, where he became one of the leading figures of the art colony there. He also returned to France on a regular basis and finally moved there in 1922 where he resided until his death in 1933.

Sight; height: 11 1/2 in x width: 15 in. Framed; height: 17 in x width: 21 in.


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