A group of 19th-century American artwork, mostly from two private Texas collections, will be on sale at Christie’s on January 19, alongside the Americana Week marquee sales.
Leading the group is In Yosemite, a landscape by Albert Bierstadt (1830-1902), a German-American painter best known for his expansive landscapes of the American West.
“He was one of the first artists during the Westward Expansion to bring back images from the West,” says Paige Kestenman, specialist in the US Art Department at Christie. “This beautiful landscape was painted on the ground, featuring Middle Cathedral Rock, the iconic location of Yosemite National Park.”
The painting was donated by the estate of Richard Rutherford Jr. (1934-2020), an oil tanker and rancher from Houston, Texas, who acquired the piece in 1973. The piece has a presale estimate of between US $ 300,000 and US $ 500,000.
Another highlight is the landscape of the Frederic Edwin Church Winter scene in Hartford, with an estimate between US $ 200,000 and US $ 300,000. Church (1826-1900) was a central figure in the Hudson River School, a mid-19th century art movement influenced by Romanticism. Their paintings typically depict the Hudson River Valley and surrounding areas, including the Catskills, Adirondacks, and White Mountains.
Winter scene in Hartford was donated by the James William Glanville and Nancy Hart Glanville Collection, one of the most important private collections of American art. The couple had both served on the board of directors of the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston.
He passed away in 1992, and she passed away in 2020.
Approximately 70 lots of 19th-century American art from these two collections will be included in Christie’s sale on January 19, with a total estimated value of between $ 3-4.5 million.
This will be the first time for Christie’s to break down traditional American paintings and sculptures to include 19th-century American art as a new category to reflect the interest of today’s collectors, Kestenman said.
Full details of the sale are now available for viewing online. The public exhibition in Christie’s Rockefeller Galleries in New York will begin on January 13, by appointment only.