63
63

PROPERTY OF A PRIVATE COLLECTOR

Maxfield Parrish
GOOD FISHING
Estimate
500,000700,000
JUMP TO LOT
63

PROPERTY OF A PRIVATE COLLECTOR

Maxfield Parrish
GOOD FISHING
Estimate
500,000700,000
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

American Art

|
New York

Maxfield Parrish
1870 - 1966
GOOD FISHING
signed Maxfield Parrish and dated 1945 (lower right); also signed Maxfield Parrish, dated 1945 and titled "Good Fishing" on the reverse
oil on masonite
23 by 18 3/4 inches
(58.4 by 47.6 cm)
Read Condition Report Read Condition Report

Provenance

Estate of the artist
Vose Galleries, Boston, Massachusetts
Sold: Christie's, New York, June 5, 1997, lot 118, illustrated
Acquired by the present owner at the above sale

Literature

Coy Ludwig, Maxfield Parrish, New York, 1973, no. 796, p. 219
Maxfield Parrish, Jr., ed., Illustrated Catalog of Paintings & Sketches by Maxfield Parrish, 1973, no. 60, p. 4, illustrated p. 10
Alma Gilbert, Maxfield Parrish: The Landscapes, Berkeley, California, 1998, no. 19, p. 90, illustrated p. 91
Laurence S. Cutler, Judy Goffman Cutler and the National Museum of American Illustration, Maxfield Parrish and the American Imagists, Edison, New Jersey, 2004, p. 286, illustrated

Catalogue Note

In 1931, at the height of his popularity as an artist, Maxfield Parrish decided to abandon the theme of youthful figures set amidst fantastical scenery that had made his a household name and devote his efforts entirely to landscape painting. The magical, detailed landscapes previously used as backgrounds for figurative works now became the primary subject. Goddesses and nymphs were replaced by another ideal–the mountains, rolling meadows, grand oak trees, farmhouses, rushing waters and open skies of the New Hampshire landscape. Concurrent with this commitment to landscape as his primary subject, Parrish began to work in a smaller format, abandoning the 30 by 24 inch size he favored in the early 1930s.  According to Coy Ludwig, "his smaller paintings seemed to him more aesthetically successful than his larger ones. It was a wise decision, for his brilliant, enamel-like surfaces and intricately detailed subjects called for the smaller size" (Maxfield Parrish, New York, 1973, p. 177).

In Good Fishing, Parrish depicts a torrent of turquoise water rushing over craggy rocks through stately trees, creating a rich tapestry of color and light effects. The dynamic winding composition underscores the energy of the water swirling through the glen, and the radiant glow of sunlight through the trees captures Parrish’s idyllic vision of New England. The meticulously rendered trees and rocks clustered along the banks of the river alternately glow with color and recede into the shadows of the shifting light. The artist’s skill as a colorist is immediately apparent in Good Fishing, in which each element of the scene is rendered with the calculated precision and intense palette that are integral to his artistic vocabulary. For Parrish, nature was infinitely complex, and he strove to transcribe its transient beauty with his meticulous technique: "those qualities which delight us in nature–the sense of freedom, pure air and light, the magic of distance, and the saturated beauty of color, must be convincingly stated and take the beholder to the very spot" (Ibid., p. 175). His labor-intensive method of applying layers of colored glazes over a white ground results in a surface that gives the impression of light shining through the hues. The intense clarity of color imparts a powerful and immediate quality, while closer examination reveals a finely layered and delicate surface.

American Art

|
New York