JOHN STEUART CURRY
John Brown, 1939, oil on canvas, 69" x 45". © John Steuart Curry. Framed by Gill & Lagodich for the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Custom-made replica, Early American molding frame, first-quarter-19th-century, beveled wood profile with worn ebonized patina and gilded flat liner. Molding width: 6-1/2” "Throughout the 1930s, Kansas-native Curry was closely associated with Benton as a member of the artistic movement known as Regionalism. John Brown reprises the subject of Curry's mural in the rotunda of the Kansas State Capitol. One of the most controversial figures in nineteenth-century American history, Brown opposed the extension of slavery in the 1850s into the Kansas Territory. Curry depicted Brown larger-than-life in an open, stark landscape besieged by a tornado—a meteorological symbol of the conflict—with a slave at his side. The abolitionist's crazed expression and animated hair and beard suggest the messianic fervor that fueled his opposition to human bondage." Arthur Hoppock Hearn Fund, 1950 (50.94.1) —Metropolitan Museum permanent collection label.
F. CHILDE HASSAM
“Flags on the Waldorf," 1916, oil on canvas, 36-1/4” x 31-1/4”. Framed by Gill & Lagodich for the Amon Carter Museum. Early 20th-century American Hassam flag painting exhibition frame; gilded applied composition ornament on wood; reverse profile; original gilding. "Hassam recorded the changing patriotic display along Fifth Avenue during World War I, when New York City regularly flew the flags of the allied nations, the armed services, and the American Red Cross." — Amon Carter Museum, permanent collection label.
Penn’s Treaty With The Indians, c. 1830-1840, oil on canvas, 17-5/8” x 23-5/8”. Framed by Gill & Lagodich in a rare c. 1830-40s American Hicks style painting frame, faux-painted wood, flat top edge and wide scoop profile with corner blocks; molding width 2-3/4”
"According to legend, in 1682 Quaker reformer William Penn met with Native Americans at Shackamaxon in what is now Philadelphia to exchange gifts for land. Although history shows that Penn did meet with the Lenape Indians, no actual treaty exists. For the Quakers, however, the meeting fulfilled the biblical prophecy of a peaceable kingdom on earth. The theme inspired more than a hundred paintings by Quaker preacher Edward Hicks, who also worked as a sign and coach painter. Using a seemingly unsophisticated style, Hicks concentrated on images that conveyed his Quaker beliefs." —MFAH catalogue
HENRY LEGRAND (after LOUIS CHARLES-AUGUST COUDER)
PHILADELPHIA, Feb. 7, 2017 — A restored mid-19th-century copy of a painting depicting George Washington and French general Rochambeau during the last major battle of America’s Revolutionary War has been installed at the Museum of the American Revolution. The painting will be prominently displayed when the Museum opens to the public on April 19. The exceptionally large painting, measuring 14-by-17 feet (16-by-19 framed), is a hand-painted copy of French artist Louis Charles-Auguste Couder’s Siege of Yorktown (1781). It hangs in the Museum’s second floor court and can be seen from the first floor, drawing visitors up the grand staircase as they begin the Museum experience.
The original 1836 Couder painting hangs in the Hall of the Battles in the Palace of Versailles. It was commissioned as part of a series of works commemorating the great moments of France’s military history. The Museum’s copy is believed to have been painted by French artist Henry LeGrand and exhibited in 1860 at the Chicago Art Union.
The painting depicts Washington and Rochambeau giving orders at Yorktown, Virginia. Rochambeau played a major role in helping the Continental Army win the war. The two men stand in front of a marquee tent much like George Washington’s Headquarters Tent, one of the most iconic surviving artifacts of the Revolution, which also is featured in the Museum.
“Since the 1830s, millions of people have seen Couder’s original painting on display at Versailles, and it has become such an important and memorable depiction of France’s role in securing American independence,” said Dr. R. Scott Stephenson, Vice President of Collections, Exhibitions, and Programming for the Museum of the American Revolution. “France and the United States have been allies since the very beginning of our nation’s history, and this painting represents the long and reciprocal relationship between our great nations.”
Three notable New York firms contributed to the conservation, stretching, and framing of the LeGrand canvas. The painting was conserved by Lowy Frame and Restoring Company, a leading fine arts services firm established in 1907. Prior to install, the canvas was stretched, minimally inpainted, and varnished on site by Amy Sokoloff and John Powell of Chelsea Restoration Associates, a widely respected painting restoration studio. Gill & Lagodich, an acclaimed antique frame gallery, custom-built the elegant frame, based on a 19th-century American example from their extensive collection. The National Society Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) provided a substantial grant to underwrite the majority of painting conservation, framing, and installation. “DAR is proud to be able to support the efforts to conserve and display this magnificent painting,” said Ann Dillon, President General of the Daughters of the American Revolution. “We are so pleased to join with the Museum of the American Revolution in the shared educational goal to ensure future generations understand the importance and relevance of the inspiring ideals of the American Revolution.”
On the flanking walls, two late-19th-century paintings by Harrington Fitzgerald, a Philadelphia newspaper editor and writer who took up painting and is believed to have studied with Thomas Eakins, also were hung this week. “The Foraging Party,” depicts Washington and his troops at Valley Forge, and the facing canvas portrays “Washington Crossing the Delaware.” The two Fitzgerald paintings, which each measure about 12 feet across, were conserved by a team of faculty and students from the University of Delaware.
New York’s Gill & Lagodich Fine Period Frames & Restoration, the preeminent framer of American paintings for museums, designed and custom-built the mahogany and gold frames for all three paintings, as well as underwriting part of the cost to the Museum.
“We chose exemplary mid-19th century American frame models that could be scaled up to surround the oversized Revolutionary scenes,” said Simeon Lagodich, co-owner of Gill & Lagodich Fine Period Frames. “We adapted historic frames by creating them in mahogany with gilded ornaments, suited to both the humbler aspects of battle as well as representing the theme of victory with gilded laurel wreathes encircling the ‘Battle of Yorktown’.”
“We also adapted cartouches from the more ornate frame surrounding the original Couder painting at Versailles,” added co-owner Tracy Gill. “The Versailles frame has hand-carved and gilded placques at top and bottom with hand-lettered title information. Though our overall frame design is decidedly American, we wanted some older French details to resonate with visitors, to visually represent the significance of international cooperation in this pivotal battle scene and establishment of a New Republic.”
Distinguished Philadelphia-based firm, Atelier Art Services, was chosen to handle the complex installation of these three-oversized works. Atelier Art Services is a trusted provider of fine art services, having handled such important art moves as Thomas Eakins’ Gross Clinic and the relocation and reinstallation of the Barnes Foundation Collection from Merion to the new campus on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway.
About the Museum of the American Revolution The Museum of the American Revolution, which opens in the heart of historic Philadelphia on April 19, 2017, will explore the dynamic story of the American Revolution using its rich collection of Revolutionary-era weapons, personal items, letters, diaries, and works of art. Immersive galleries, theater experiences, and recreated historical environments will bring to life the events, people, and ideals of our nation’s founding and engage people in the history and continuing relevance of the American Revolution. Located just steps away from Independence Hall, Carpenters’ Hall, and Franklin Court, the Museum will serve as a portal to the region’s many Revolutionary sites, sparking interest, providing context, and encouraging exploration. The Museum is a private, non-profit, and non-partisan organization. For more information, visit www.AmRevMuseum.org or call 877.740.1776.
WILLIAM SIDNEY MOUNT
WILLIAM SIDNEY MOUNT (1807–1868) “Bar-Room Scene”, 1835, oil on canvas, 22” x 27” Framed by Gill & Lagodich for the Art Institute of Chicago. c. 1840s American painting frame; gilded applied ornament on wood; molding width 4-3/4” "William Sidney Mount’s scenes of everyday life provide insight into the complex social and racial divisions of antebellum America. The central figure in this tavern is a homeless wanderer who literally dances along a line in the floorboards and, as a result, walks a symbolic line between class and race. The color of his skin unites him with the more prosperous men who urge on his drunken revelry, but his poverty makes him an outcast like the African American man in the shadows, who smiles and looks on but is not an integral part of the group." — Art Institute of Chicago, Permanent collection label
LILLY MARTIN SPENCER
LILLY MARTIN SPENCER (1822 – 1902) The Home Of The Red, White, And Blue, c. 1867 – 1868, oil on canvas, 24-1/8 x 30-1/8 inches. Framed by Gill & Lagodich for the Terra Foundation of American Art. c. 1850s-60s American painting frame; gilded applied composition ornament over wood. "With its acquisition of Lily Martin Spencer‘s Home of the Red, White, and Blue of about 1867, the Terra Foundation enhances its rich holdings in nineteenth-century genre painting and adds to the many works in the collection by women. The painting joins a group of works thematically related to the Civil War, including Frederic E. Church’s Our Banner in the Sky, Winslow Homer’s On Guard, and William Sydney Mount’s Fruit Piece: Apples on Tin Cups. Spencer’s scene of a family picnic combines national politics with the artist’s favorite theme, the domestic gathering. Here, generations of family members are joined by several obvious outsiders in a metaphor for the gravely fractured nation at its crucial moment of reunification, symbolized by the tattered flag under repair in the foreground. Now considered one of the leading genre painters of the antebellum period, Spencer created narrative works in which women are uniquely central. Since her rediscovery beginning in 1974, scholars and art enthusiasts have come to value Spencer’s images for the important insights they offer into middle-class domesticity, the cultural politics of gender roles, and the turbulent state of the American nation in the mid-nineteenth century. "Home of the Red, White, and Blue" is featured in the exhibition Home Front: Daily Life in the Civil War North, co-organized by the Terra Foundation and The Newberry, on view Sept. 27–Mar. 4, 2014."