Armin Carl Hansen (1886-1957) Making Port 30 x 32in

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Lot 6
Armin Carl Hansen
(1886-1957)
Making Port 30 x 32in

Sold for US$ 100,075 inc. premium
Armin Carl Hansen (1886-1957)
Making Port
signed 'Armin Hansen' (lower left)
oil on canvas
30 x 32in

Footnotes

  • Provenance
    Stendahl Galleries, Los Angeles, California.
    Josephine P. Everett Collection, Pasadena Art Institute, Pasadena, California.
    Sale, Sotheby Parke Bernet, Los Angeles, Fine 19th and 20th Century American and European Paintings, March 17, 1980, lot 362.
    Maxwell Galleries, San Francisco, California.
    Justin Dart, Monterey, California.
    William A. Karges Fine Art, Carmel, California.
    Acquired by the present owner from the above.

    Exhibited
    Los Angeles, Stendahl Galleries, Exhibition of Paintings by Armin Hansen, April 1923.
    Los Angeles, Stendahl Galleries, Oil Paintings, Water Colors and Etchings by Armin Hansen, A.N.A., April - May 1930.
    Monterey, Del Monte Art Gallery, Exhibition of Paintings by Armin Hansen, A.N.A., June - July 1930.
    Oakland, The Oakland Museum, Impressionism: California View 1890-1930, September 1981 - May 1982.
    Monterey, Monterey Peninsula Museum of Art, Armin Hansen: A Centennial Salute, October 11 - November 30, 1986.
    Scottsdale, Fleischer Museum, Selections from the Irvine Museum Exhibition, March 1 - May 31, 1993.
    Oakland, The Oakland Museum, Selections from the Irvine Museum Exhibition, November 13, 1993 – February 20, 1994.
    Irvine, The Irvine Museum, California Impressionists: A presentation of the Atlanta Committee for the Olympic Games, organized by the Georgia Museum of Art and The Irvine Museum, traveling exhibition, July 1996 – January 1998.
    Irvine, The Irvine Museum, Selections from The Irvine Museum, October 6, 2009 – February 13, 2010.
    Irvine, The Irvine Museum, California Impressionism: Selections from the Irvine Museum, September 28, 2013 – January 9, 2014.

    Literature
    J. Stern, Selections from the Irvine Museum, Irvine, 1992, p. 86, illustrated full page color.
    W.H. Gerdts, All Things Bright & Beautiful, California Paintings from The Irvine Museum, Irvine, 1998, p. 83, p. 135, plate 50, illustrated full page color.
    J. Stern, Masters of Light, Plein Air Painting in California 1890-1930, Irvine, 2002, p. 62, illustrated in color.
    J. Stern, Selections from the Irvine Museum, Irvine, 2009 (reprise of the 1992 exhibition of the same name), p. 141, illustrated full page color.
    S. A. Shields, Armin Hansen, The Artful Voyage, Pasadena Museum of California Art, 2015, pp. 172-173, illustrated full page color.

    At the mere age of six, Armin Carl Hansen, the son of acclaimed Western painter and illustrator, Herman Hansen, knew that he too wanted to "draw things."1 Though he may not have known the proper term 'artist' at the time, Hansen would in fact grow to become one of Northern California's most gifted Impressionists, the leading maritime painter throughout the Monterey region and a founder of the Monterey History and Art Association.

    Born in San Francisco in 1886, Hansen gained his first unofficial art instruction and disciplined work ethic from his father, through daily assigned painting or illustrating tasks. 2 He later pursued formal training at the Mark Hopkins Institute in 1903, until it was destroyed in the 1906 earthquake. Hansen embarked to Germany where, after a painting of seagulls on a row of housetops by Carlos Grethe resonated with Hansen's coastal roots, he spent two years under Grethe's tutelage at the Royal Academy in Stuttgart. After which, Hansen set up a small studio in Nieuwpoort, immersed in maritime culture, and financially supporting himself by working on a North Sea trawler and painting in his spare time. 3 Hansen returned to California in 1912, initially splitting his time between studios in San Francisco and the Monterey Peninsula before finally settling in Monterey, where he evolved into one of the most distinguished and influential artists in the Monterey art colony.

    In contrast to traditional European Impressionists' softer color palettes and chromaticism, Hansen was exceptional in his use of bold strokes of color, embracing motion with a new sense of dynamism. A 1929 Los Angeles Times review praised Hansen as bringing a "welcome dash of speed and color" to the art scene.4 Further distinguishing Hansen from his Californian contemporaries was his subject matter – where the majority of Southern Californian Impressionists focused on tranquil landscapes and avoided labor scenes – Hansen shone a spotlight on the daily laborious struggle of fisherman and the sea.

    Hansen was an innate storyteller and the narratives of his paintings are easy to quickly comprehend. His portrayals of the sea and humanity's interaction with it were virile and vigorous, simultaneously communicating the power of nature and human fortitude. 5 In Making Port, Hansen evokes dramatic tension through a dark and neutral toned color palette, while the asymmetrical composition and his tremendous aptitude applying broad swaths of paint to represent the sea's fury further activates the scene. 6 By compacting the ships' efforts to determinedly press forward against the white-capped waves into a sole corner of the canvas, Hansen succinctly captures how seemingly small and perilous their plight is while encompassed by the vast sea.

    Perhaps most impressive is Hansen's ability to reduce his compositions to their essentials. Noted art critic Anthony Anderson wrote often of Hansen's skill, which is expressly visible in Making Port, "We never dreamt elimination could go so far. There is nothing in the best of his pictures – absolutely nothing – that suggests unnecessary detail. Can you discover a single stroke of the brush in any one of these that you would wish eliminated? A few broad planes of color, and there you have the picture."7

    1 J. F. Hernandez, Armin Hansen, The Jane and Justin Dart Collection, Monterey Peninsula Museum of Art, California, 1993, p. 8.
    2 S. A. Shields, Armin Hansen, The Artful Voyage, Pasadena Museum of California Art, California, 2015, p. 59.
    3 Ibid, p.17.
    4 Ibid, p. 31.
    5 Ibid, p. 29.
    6 J. Stern, Masters of Light, Plein Air Painting in California 1890-1930, Irvine, California, 2002, p. 63.
    7 S. A. Shields, Armin Hansen, The Artful Voyage, Pasadena Museum of California Art, California, 2015, p. 169.
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