Oil on canvas
Housed in a gilt frame with label on verso from The Framing Guild, Madison Avenue, New York City
Sight size: 13 1/4" ht. x 15 1/4" wd.
Framed size: 17" ht. x 19" wd.
An oil on canvas by Ireland's famed Paul Henry, signed in the lower left. A finely done and fresh-to-the-market impressionist Irish landscape with farmÂ cottages on a marsh in the foreground and mountainous landscape in the background. This work, almost certainly executed in Connemara, is very likely the exact same scene as Henry's "A Blue Day", numbered 920 in the artist's catalog raisonne,Â (Kennedy, Yale University Press, 2007) Two other works listed in the catalog raisonne ("Cottages by the Lake, Outer Killary, Connemara" and "Lake and Mountains in Connemara") have an almost identical composition toÂ this work being offered for sale. It is likely that the artist spent many days/weeks at this location, and executed multiple works from different vantage points. The work offered for sale is from a closer vantage point than the three noted above.Â
An excerpt from the catalog by Dr. Kennedy on page 281 discussing "A Blue Day" reads "A fine set piece composition in which the landscape is treated in an almost iconic manner. The handling of the paint, with brisk, fluid brushwork, is typical of Henry's work of the mid 1930's. After the Toronto exhibition - Henry's last one-man show in north America - the unsold paintings were placed in the custody of James Healy, his agent in New York". It is possible that this work was exhibited in the Toronto exhibition, and subsequently purchased from Mr. Healy by Mary Geraldine Kane in the late 1930's. Mrs. Kane lived on Park Avenue in New York City, and frequented fine art galleries there as well as abroad on her travels.Â
This will be the first time this example by Ireland's most well-known impressionist artist will ever be sold at public auction.Â
Purchased by either the consignor's great-grandfather, Sir Patrick McGovern of Blacklion (1870-1933), or grandmother, Mary Geraldine McGovern Kane circa 1930-1945, subsequently passed down to Carol and Robert Kane of Oxford, Ohio and thence by descent. Sir Patrick was a first generation immigrant to the U.S. who gained fame by becoming chief structural architect and tunnel builder of the Philadelphia, Boston and New York subways and aqueducts. This work has been in the family since the date of purchase, and this is the first time it will ever be offered for public sale.Â
Lifetime collection of Carol and Robert (Rob) Kane, Oxford, OH.Â
Carol and Robert (Rob) Kane were residents of Oxford, Ohio since 1962. Rob taught Classics at Miami University (Ohio) for 37 years and volunteered at the Saint Francis Seraph Soup Kitchen in Cincinnati for 13 years after his retirement. Carol was active for over three decades as a docent at Miami University Art Museum and a member of the Philanthropic Educational Organization, which helps women achieve their educational goals through scholarships and grants. Married 51 years, the couple raised two sons who survive them, John and Ned, both of California.
Carol and Rob traveled widely in North and South America, Asia, and Europe. They shared a lifelong passion for art, and museums and galleries were at the top of their agenda when traveling. Over the decades, they collected art both close to home and during their travels. A special example is a two month tour of Japan and China in 1985, when tourism in China was just starting to reopen. They took along their young sons and, with input from Asian art historians friends touring with them, collected numerous paintings and ceramics. Many of those items, along with others collected in the US and around the world, are included in this sale. Others were inherited by Carol and Rob from their parents, especially Robâs mother Mary Geraldine Kane of New York City, who collected in the US, Ireland, and the UK.
Carol was born in Grosse Pointe, MI, attended the Academy of the Sacred Heart and Manhattanville College, and earned a masters degree in European history from Georgetown University.Â
Rob was from New York City, attended the College of the Holy Cross, and earned a PhD from Princeton University.
The work has been housed under glass for decades and, as a result, remains in a fine state of preservation. A very minor crease can be seen along the left hand side of the work, about 1/8" from the frame, where the painting was likely re-stretched. This line stretches from the lower left to the upper left and is barely discernible.