William Wendt (American, 1865-1946) Lupine patch 25 x 30in overall: 32 1/2 x 37 1/2in (Painted in 1921)
Lot 48
William Wendt
(American, 1865-1946)
Lupine patch 25 x 30in overall: 32 1/2 x 37 1/2in
Sold for US$ 233,000 inc. premium

Lot Details
William Wendt (American, 1865-1946)
Lupine patch
signed and dated 'William Wendt. 1921.' (lower left)
oil on canvas
25 x 30in
overall: 32 1/2 x 37 1/2in
Painted in 1921

Footnotes

  • Provenance
    With Laguna Beach Art Gallery, Laguna, California.
    With Josh Hardy Galleries, Carmel, California.
    Estate of Patricia Anawalt, Brentwood, California.

    Exhibited
    Laguna, Laguna Art Museum, In Nature's Temple, The Life and Art of William Wendt, November 9, 2008 - February 8, 2009.

    Literature
    Will South, Jean Stern, Janet Blake, and Jean Patterson, In Nature's Temple, The Life and Art of William Wendt, Irvine, 2008, p. 49, full page color illustration.

    In 1914, William Wendt wrote of meaning within the landscape. The painter or interpreter of nature loves nature and approaches her with reverence. The painting of a simple hillside, a tree, a stream, or a quiet brook means as much to him as an "awe-striking" scene. He finds new secrets in simple things, and toils long in his search for the message, which is for him alone. (In Nature's Temple, p. 161) Wendt's search for the message involved an obsessive exploration of green as is well-documented in his body of work. Uniquely, this picture is believed to be his only known work depicting wild lupine.

    Lupine patch is a beautiful example of Wendt's artistry in capturing the saturated green of California's hills. As is typical for Wendt, he makes a bold compositional choice in this painting, selecting a landscape that extends beyond the top of the canvas, with a small clipped bit of bright cloudy sky in the upper right corner. Wendt contrasts this bright area in the upper right with the shadowed landscape in the upper left. The oaks and their shadows drape across the topography with Wendt's characteristic attention to the effects of the California light. A veritable ocean of purple lupine flowers dominate the bottom of the painting. These flowers are flattened in form in order to highlight their color -- lavender and purple strokes with tiny crimson, white and pink touches as highlights. The heavy use of these colors is quite rare for a painting by Wendt and perhaps reflects his search for a message in this classic Californian scene.
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