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Paul Henry RHA RUA (1876-1958) The Bog at Evening Oil on Canvas, 76 x 91cm (30 x 36'') Signed Provenance: Combridge's Fine Art Dublin, Henry Lee Shattuck, Boston Exhibited: ''Exhibition of Pictures by Paul and Grace Henry'', Magee's Gallery Belfast, April, 1923; ''Paul Henry'', NGI, Dublin, 19 February - 18 May 2003, Catalogue No. 71 Literature: S.B. Kennedy, ''Paul Henry'', NGI, Dublin, 2003, pp. 100-2, illustrated; S.B. Kennedy, ''Paul Henry - Paintings, drawings, illustration'', Yale, 2007, Catalogue Raisonne No. 591 As with many artists, a good number of Paul Henry's paintings are known by more than one title. This often makes for difficulties in precisely identifying them, although contemporary press reviews (which are usually more detailed than those of today) of the artist's exhibitions often help in this regard, Thus, for example, the ''Northern Whig'' (12 April 1923) in its review of Henry's 1923 Exhibition at Magee's Gallery, Belfast, commented on a composition called ''The Bog at Evening'' in a manner which exactly describes this picture: ''the black peat-stacks'', it said, ''stand out against the dim brown of the bog, and the curves of their shapes are repeated and magnified in the curves of the mountains, and of the clouds that tower above them''. It continued: ''The repetition of these curves gives a sense of rhythm to the design, and the fine purple of the mountains is enriched by the contrast with the blacks and browns of the foreground''. Despite also being known as ''Evening on an Achill Bog'' (a label on the reverse of the frame, but not in the artist's hand, bears this title), it seems likely that this picture is indeed ''The Bog at Evening'' which Henry exhibited in 1923. The first owner of the picture, H. L. Shattuck, who also owned another Henry painting, ''A Mountain Village'' (no in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston), almost certainly acquired it from the exhibition of ''Contemporary Irish Art'', held at Grace Horne's Gallery, Boston, in May 1929. At any rate, ''The Bog at Evening'' shows Henry at the height of his powers. There is an absence of all human activity, his attention is focused firmly on the landscape and his handling of paint and treatment of the scene have become slightly codified, with a suffuse sense of stillness, even of timelessness - in this respect compare, for example, his ''In the West of Ireland'' (National Gallery of Ireland), which also dates from the 1920's - in a manner that typifies much of his oeuvre hereafter. Although one cannot be certain, the setting is most probably Connemara, and my be Achill Island. The size of the composition is unusual for Henry, as is the degree of impasto employed throughout, but these elements serve to illustrate confidence and vigour of the artist's early years in Dublin, The handling of colour is particularly subtle, the pinks and warm creams in the cloud formations contrasting with the cooler cobalt blues elsewhere in the sky, while the juxtaposition of the purple mountains and the yellow cornfield in the middle distance is distinctly Post-Impressionist in concept and recalls the artist's time in Paris. The foreground, too, despite, the predominance, of the umbers, browns and blacks of soft earth, is a myriad of pinks and other hues and the reflections in the foreground pool lead the eye back into the composition and ultimately splendour of the sky. A label on the reverse of the frame notes: 'Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, T.L. 3682, H.L. Shattuck.' Dr. S.B. Kennedy
Estimate EUR : €150,000.00 - €250,000.00
Auction Date : 26-09-2012

Description

Paul Henry RHA RUA (1876-1958) The Bog at Evening Oil on Canvas, 76 x 91cm (30 x 36'') Signed Provenance: Combridge's Fine Art Dublin, Henry Lee Shattuck, Boston Exhibited: ''Exhibition of Pictures by Paul and Grace Henry'', Magee's Gallery Belfast, April, 1923; ''Paul Henry'', NGI, Dublin, 19 February - 18 May 2003, Catalogue No. 71 Literature: S.B. Kennedy, ''Paul Henry'', NGI, Dublin, 2003, pp. 100-2, illustrated; S.B. Kennedy, ''Paul Henry - Paintings, drawings, illustration'', Yale, 2007, Catalogue Raisonne No. 591 As with many artists, a good number of Paul Henry's paintings are known by more than one title. This often makes for difficulties in precisely identifying them, although contemporary press reviews (which are usually more detailed than those of today) of the artist's exhibitions often help in this regard, Thus, for example, the ''Northern Whig'' (12 April 1923) in its review of Henry's 1923 Exhibition at Magee's Gallery, Belfast, commented on a composition called ''The Bog at Evening'' in a manner which exactly describes this picture: ''the black peat-stacks'', it said, ''stand out against the dim brown of the bog, and the curves of their shapes are repeated and magnified in the curves of the mountains, and of the clouds that tower above them''. It continued: ''The repetition of these curves gives a sense of rhythm to the design, and the fine purple of the mountains is enriched by the contrast with the blacks and browns of the foreground''. Despite also being known as ''Evening on an Achill Bog'' (a label on the reverse of the frame, but not in the artist's hand, bears this title), it seems likely that this picture is indeed ''The Bog at Evening'' which Henry exhibited in 1923. The first owner of the picture, H. L. Shattuck, who also owned another Henry painting, ''A Mountain Village'' (no in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston), almost certainly acquired it from the exhibition of ''Contemporary Irish Art'', held at Grace Horne's Gallery, Boston, in May 1929. At any rate, ''The Bog at Evening'' shows Henry at the height of his powers. There is an absence of all human activity, his attention is focused firmly on the landscape and his handling of paint and treatment of the scene have become slightly codified, with a suffuse sense of stillness, even of timelessness - in this respect compare, for example, his ''In the West of Ireland'' (National Gallery of Ireland), which also dates from the 1920's - in a manner that typifies much of his oeuvre hereafter. Although one cannot be certain, the setting is most probably Connemara, and my be Achill Island. The size of the composition is unusual for Henry, as is the degree of impasto employed throughout, but these elements serve to illustrate confidence and vigour of the artist's early years in Dublin, The handling of colour is particularly subtle, the pinks and warm creams in the cloud formations contrasting with the cooler cobalt blues elsewhere in the sky, while the juxtaposition of the purple mountains and the yellow cornfield in the middle distance is distinctly Post-Impressionist in concept and recalls the artist's time in Paris. The foreground, too, despite, the predominance, of the umbers, browns and blacks of soft earth, is a myriad of pinks and other hues and the reflections in the foreground pool lead the eye back into the composition and ultimately splendour of the sky. A label on the reverse of the frame notes: 'Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, T.L. 3682, H.L. Shattuck.' Dr. S.B. Kennedy

Hammer Price : €150,000.00
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