Lot 14
  • 14

Fairfield Porter

200,000 - 300,000 USD
bidding is closed


  • Fairfield Porter
  • Jimmy with Lamp
  • signed Fairfield (lower right); signed again Fairfield Porter and dated '71 (upper left)
  • oil on canvas


The artist
[With]Knoedler Gallery, New York
[With]Hirschl & Adler Galleries, New York
Harbor Gallery, Cold Spring Harbor, New York
Acquired by the present owner from the above, circa 1972


New York, Hirschl & Adler Galleries, Recent Works by Fairfield Porter, April 1972, no. 29, illustrated, n.p.
Cold Spring Harbor, New York, Harbor Gallery, Fairfield Porter, August-September 1972, no. 6
Huntington, New York, Heckscher Museum; Flushing, New York, Queens Museum; Montclair, New Jersey, Montclair Art Museum, Fairfield Porter Retrospective Exhibition, December 1974-April 1975, no. 32, p. 8


Joan Ludman, “Checklist of Paintings by Fairfield Porter,” Fairfield Porter: An American Classic, New York, 1992, p. 301
Joan Ludman, Fairfield Porter: A Catalogue Raisonné of the Paintings, Watercolors, and Pastels, New York, 2001, no. L761, pp. 270-71, illustrated 

Catalogue Note

The present work depicts the poet James “Jimmy” Schuyler in the living room of Fairfield Porter’s Southampton home, where he lived with the artist and his family from 1961 to 1973. The two men influenced each other greatly – Porter produced several portraits of the poet, and Schuyler not only dedicated his first collection to the Porter family, but also wove the painter into his own verse. In the exhibition catalogue for Porter’s 1972 exhibition at Hirschl & Adler Galleries in New York, Peter Schjeldahl writes of the Jimmy with Lamp, “The difficulties of its composition are ingeniously self-imposed: the primary light source, a bright lamp that illuminates mainly a glass of wine and the sitter’s white shirt (leaving his shirt partially in the shadow) is included prominently in the picture, as is an awkwardly spacious area of receding wall and floor to the sitter’s left … the tonal range from light to dark is severe. Yet, with all this apparent busyness, the picture is serene, a fact that it is hard to fully account for in analytic terms. The ‘presence’ of the sitter – the presence of personality in his oblique gaze – is certainly a factor in ordering the painting’s disparate elements. The ordering is thus, in a way, ‘hieratic.’ The presence of a real person, this lovely portrait seems to say, is a proof against distractions” (as quoted in Recent Work by Fairfield Porter, New York, 1972, n.p.).