1291
1291

PROPERTY FROM THE COLLECTION OF SUSAN AND MARK LARACY

A Fine and Rare Painted Pine and Compass-Drawn Box, George Robert Lawton (1813-1885), Scituate, Providence County, Rhode Island, circa 1860
Estimation
20 00040 000
Lot. Vendu 25,000 USD (Prix d’adjudication avec commission acheteur)
ACCÉDER AU LOT
1291

PROPERTY FROM THE COLLECTION OF SUSAN AND MARK LARACY

A Fine and Rare Painted Pine and Compass-Drawn Box, George Robert Lawton (1813-1885), Scituate, Providence County, Rhode Island, circa 1860
Estimation
20 00040 000
Lot. Vendu 25,000 USD (Prix d’adjudication avec commission acheteur)
ACCÉDER AU LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Important Americana

|
New York

A Fine and Rare Painted Pine and Compass-Drawn Box, George Robert Lawton (1813-1885), Scituate, Providence County, Rhode Island, circa 1860
the rectangular box with iron hinges, opening to an interior lined with 1874 newspaper, printed labels from New York Sarsaparilla, Hamilton Prints Fast Colors, as well as glazed wall paper fragments; the top and front with compass drawn geometric patterns of diamonds, circles, arrow-heads and arches flanked by narrow checkerboards; the left side with argyles and arches; the right side with interlacing circles in beige, red, black and white
height 10 in.; length 17 in.; depth 13 in.
25.4 cm; 43.2 cm; 33 cm
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Description

George Robert Lawton (1813-1885), son of Robert Lawton and Sarah Anthony, was born in Newport, Rhode Island. He married Rosinda Searle (1816-1885) in Scituate, Rhode Island, where they raised five children. Lawton was of English heritage with deep roots in Rhode Island (paragraph excerpt from Stacy C. Hollander, American Radiance, 2001, p. 425).

Lawton often uses a color scheme of primarily red and white using black to create strong contrasts in the geometric motifs. This box is of simple construction, but has a complex, carefully calculated painted decoration. 

Until the mid-1980s, George Robert Lawton's boxes were mis-attributed to John Colvin, a Rhode Island woodworker, builder, and carpenter. The two families - the Lawtons and the Colvins - were actually related by marriage.  David Schorsch, a Connecticut dealer who purchased a number of Colvin-attributed pieces at a Skinner Americana auction on January 7, 1983, discovered Lawton as a folk artisan. In the course of his research on Lawton and with the help of a Scituate art historian and writer, Barbara Sarkesian, Schorsch spoke to Lawton's descendants, including his granddaughter Lucy Colvin Hart, who was in her early 90s in 1986. Hart said, "I'm going to tell you once and for all; there are no maybes about it. That chest [wall box] and all of those other things were made by my grandfather, George Robert Lawton, and John Colvin had nothing to do with it." Hart went on to describe specific Lawton-made pieces in Lawton's home, and she confirmed that Schorsch's purchases were, in fact, made by Lawton. (see David Schorsch, "A 19th-Century Rhode Island Folk Artisan Discovered: Lawton, not Colvin," Maine Antiques Digest, March 1987, 18D-19D)

Important Americana

|
New York