Kevin's Art Collection
copyright 2007-2020

    I like a lot of different styles of painting. I have had an active interest in art for the past few years, and my tastes are still evolving as I learn and live with my growing collection. I do not collect as an investment but for the fun of it and to feed my enjoyment for doing research and learning. Here are some of my favorites. By the way, I am NOT the wildlife artist of the same name.

California Artists   Illinois Artists  Indiana Artists  New York Artists   Ohio Artists

Pennsylvania Artists      Texas Artists     New England Artists    
Other Artists

UK Artists    Canadian Artists    South American Artists    Asian Artists  European Artists

Unknown Artists
    Unknown Artists 1    Unknown Artists 2    Unknown Artists 3


New York Artists

unnamed by Sergei Alexander

unnamed, A. Nelke, 8" x 10", oil on canvas board

    Sergei “Alexander” Nelke was born on 14 December 1894 in Vihula, Reval, Estonia. His ancestry was Finnish. The first mention of him in U.S. records is his WWI draft registration card, which was completed on 1 August 1917, and notes he was tall, stout, blue eyed and had light color hair. He had arrived as a seaman on the ship Brosund shortly before that, and the ship's passenger list gives his height as 5' 8 1/2” and weight as 200 lbs. Other records indicate that he worked as a ship's carpenter for as long as 17 years. His brother, Waldemar “George” Nelke arrived in the U. S. about the same time, also employed as a ship's carpenter, but married a Finnish woman named Lillian soon after and worked as a maintenance man in a bank for many years. Census and naturalization records for George Nelke have helped to confirm the identity of Alexander Nelke. The WWI draft registration cards of both men mention that they were supporting a mother and sister in Russia, likely in Estonia.

unnamed, 10x14 oil on
                    canvas, Alexander Nelke

unnamed, A. Nelke, 10" x 14", oil on stretched canvas

    Nelke appears as a sailor on several ship's passenger lists before 1930. He does not appear in any census records, so likely worked as a sailor or traveled before 1940. His 17 year career as a shipboard carpenter is mentioned in the “New Yorker at Large” column of the Morning News of Florence, South Carolina on 17 June 1936. The subject of this column was the Washington Square annual outdoor art show in New York City. Nelke is mentioned in the article as an exhibitor and one of the “handful of surprising personalities” of the show. Nelke is referenced as a member of the Washington Square Outdoor Association in the Supplement to Mallett's Index of Artists. Nelke worked as a commercial artist, and his work was often reproduced at prints and on items such as playing cards.

    Nelke exhibited at the Salons of America in 1934 & 1936 and with The Society of Independent Artists (SIA) in 1934, 1936, 1938, 1940 and 1944. The record of his address on Baltic Street in Brooklyn, New York in the records of the SIA matches the address on his WWII Draft Registration card and 1945 Naturalization record. Both of these records give his full name as Sergei Alexander Nelke, though he signed as Alexander Nelke on his draft registration card. Nelke is also mentioned in Davenports Art Reference and Price Guide and Who Was Who in American Art by Falk. Details regarding his training as an artist are not known. Nelke primarily painted marine scenes and landscapes, but one reference to a figurative painting has been found.

    Nelke died in Brooklyn, New York in August 1974.

unnamed by Alexander Nelke

unnamed, Alexander Nelke, 8" x 10", oil on canvas board

"Murray" by
                Rosabelle Morse

"Murray", Rosabelle Jacqueline Morse, 19" x 14", oil on canvas

    Rosabelle Jacqueline Morse was born on 13 November 1914 in Brooklyn, New York, a daughter of Louis Joseph and Gertrude Labuschin Morse. Louis and Gertrude were married about 1903 and were living in Brooklyn in 1910 where Louis was working as an "Inspector, street". Louis was working as an "Inspector, Docks and Ferries" in Brooklyn during the 1915 New York census. Gertrude was born in Germany and came to the US in 1887, at the age of 5 years. Louis was the son of English immigrants. According to the 1936 year book of Cooper Union College she was attending the Day Art School. Rosabelle attended Cooper Union College for five years and worked as an artist her entire life. She married Benjamin Breger by 1940 when they were living in the Bronx, New York during the census. Benjamin was employed as a "truant officer, public school". Rosabelle seems to have continued to use her maiden name when she worked as an artist. Later in life she resided in Fort Lee, New Jersey. Her exhibition at the Ward Eggleston Gallery, New York was mentioned in "Arts Magazine" and "Magazine of Art" in 1951. She is mentioned in the "Art News Annual" in 1955 and in the "Portfolio and Art News Annual" in 1960. She was mentioned in "Locus: A Cross-referenced Directory of New York Galleries and Art" in 1975. She was listed in Who's Who in American Art in 1999 and Dictionary of signatures & monograms of American artists, from the colonial period to the mid 20th century by Peter Falk.
    This painting was purchased directly from the artist's daughter. She noted that the subject was Rosabelle's piano teacher. Rosabelle was also an accomplished musician.
    Rosabelle died on 21 December 2002 in Saratoga Springs, New York.

Ethel Cutler "The Glenn"

"The Glenn", Ethel R. Cutler, 12" x 16", oil, 1991

    Ethel Rose Cutler was born on 13 March 1915 in New York City, New York, a daughter of Samuel and Sophie Cutler, Russian Jewish immigrants. Samuel worked as an iron worker and in the carpet business. She received a BA from Hunter College in 1936 and an MA from Columbia University in 1937 and received a PhD from Walden University in 1979. She also received a certificate in advertising and interior design from the School of Professional Arts. She was a painter, designer, and teacher. Cutler worked in pastels, watercolors, oils, inks and graphite. She also studied at New York University, the University of Missouri, Institute of Design at Illinois Institute of Technology, the American Artist School, New School for Social Research, the National Academy of Design and the American Artists School. Cutler was a member of the Art Directors Club, Artists Equity Association, College Arts Association, National Society of Interior Designers, Colonial Art Association and Women in Design. She worked at Women's College University, Adelphi College, University of Missouri and Rhode Island School of Design. Cutler exhibited widely won numerous awards and her work is in several collections.
    Cutler is listed in Davenports Art Reference and Price Guide, American Artists of Renown 1981-1982, Who's Who in American Art, Who's Who of American Women, International Dictionary Biographies, and The World Who's Who of Women.
    Ethel Rose Cutler died on 31 March 2007 in New York City at the age of 93.

                  Cutler "Reflection"

"Reflection", Ethel Cutler, 16" x 12", oil

watercolor by Aurelia Angela

unnamed, Aurelia A. Varrone, 14" x 11", watercolor

    Aurelia Angela Varrone was born on 11 November 1909. She earned an AB degree from Columbia University in 1934. She received a license to teach Fine Arts in New York secondary schools in 1939 and a BS degree from New York University in 1940. According to the Society of Independent Artists: the exhibition record 1917-1944, she exhibited two watercolors, a floral and a landscape, in 1944. Varrone made several trips to Europe via passenger ships in the 1950s. Her address was the same, 3009 Wallace Avenue, Bronx,  NY, on her Columbia University record, SIA exhibition record and the passenger lists from her trips to Europe, so she lived at the address for at least 20 years. Two of the passenger lists noted that she was single, but there did not seem to be a distinction between divorced, widowed and single on the lists. No indications of a marriage have been found for her. She has not been located in any census record, so it is uncertain whether Varrone was her married or maiden name. It is also possible that she was not born in the US.
    Aurelia Varrone is mentioned in Arts Magazine in 1953 and 1954 as a member of the Kottler Group, possibly related to the Lynn Kottler Gallery, a well known New York art gallery that was founded in 1949 and seems to have been active into the 1980s. Varrone is listed in Davenports Art Reference and Price Guide and Who Was Who in American Art by Falk.
    Varrone died on 1 April 1972 in Mt. Vernon, Westchester County, NY.

Aurelia Angela Varrone signature

A. A. Varrone signature

Self Portrait by John Shayn

"Self Portrait", John Shayn, 20" x 18", oil on board, 1969

    John Joseph Shayn was born on 15 January 1901 in Wilena, Russia, as Jacob Sheinfein, a son of Joseph and Ida Sheinfein, later of Chelsea, Massachusetts. The Sheinfeins were Jewish. The Sheinfein family immigrated to the U.S. in 1909 settling in Chelsea. Jacob was employed as a confectioner, with his own shop in 1910, and as a "Newsdealer" in 1920. John Joseph Shayn was reported as Jacob Shayn in the 1930 census of Brooklyn, New York. He and his wife, Bulah, were living at 304 Crown St. and his occupation was "artist, commercial". He and his wife had been married for about two years, according to the census. John submitted a petition for naturalization on 23 March 1937 in New York City. In the petition he reported that he had married a woman named Rose on 23 December 1927 in New York and that their daughter Della was born on 5 June 1930 in Brooklyn, New York. Their address was 101 W. 41st Street, New York and John was employed as an advertising designer. John and Rose were divorced in 1940 in Dade County, Florida. He was later married to Florence Gordon.
    John Shayn was a painter, sculptor, illustrator, graphic designer, lithographer and etcher. He attended Boston University. He later studied print making at the Art Students League in New York and worked in lithographs and etchings.
He exhibited paintings and sculpture at the Arthur U. Newton Gallery in New York. His exhibitions were reviewed in the New York Times. He experimented with surrealism. He is listed in Who's Who in American Art (1973, 1976), Davenports Art Reference and Price Guide and Who Was Who in American Art by Falk.
    John Joseph Shayn died in December 1977 in New York City.

verso, John Shayn "Self


John shayn signature

John Shayn signature

unnamed by Joseph Newman

unnamed, Joseph Newman, 20" x 16", oil on board

    Joseph Newman was born in New York City on 4 September 1890, a son of Nettie Newman. Newman's father died between 1900 and 1910, and unfortunately, his name is indecipherable in the 1900 census. Joseph Newman appears with his mother and later his spouse and children in the 1910-1930 censuses of Brooklyn, New York. His occupation was listed as artist from 1910. He attended the Pratt Institute and the Adelphi College Art School. Newman served in the U.S. Army during WWI, which may indicate why there is no WWI draft registration card available for him. After the war, he married a woman named Stella or Estelle and traveled to Europe. In the mid 1920's he formed, with a group of contemporaries, The Fifteen Gallery in Manhattan. Newman exhibited frequently at the Brooklyn Museum, The National Academy, The Carnegie Institute, The Whitney and The Society of Independent Artists. He was a member of the L.C. Tiffany Foundation, The Salmagundi Club, Rockport Art Association, and the American Watercolor Society. His work is represented in the collections of the Brooklyn Museum, The Newark Museum, the Boston Library, and the Library of Congress. Newman was the recipient of many awards throughout his career. This painting is not signed but bears Newman's estate stamp. The model's foot is not quite completed so Newman may have been working on this one at the time of his death.

    Newman died in September 1979 in Flushing, Queens County, New York.

unanmed painting by Carlton D. Ellinger

unnamed, Carlton D. Ellinger, 9" x 11", oil on board, 1940

    Carlton Daniel Ellinger was born on 8 November 1888 in Allegan, Michigan a son of Daniel J. G. and Amelia R. Ellinger. Daniel J. G. Ellinger was deceased by 1900 and Carlton and his mother were living with his grandparents, Daniel and Regina Ellinger in Allegan. Daniel Ellinger was a "preacher". Carlton was living in Detroit, Michigan in 1910 where he was a self employed "Designer, Book Cover". Carlton may have received his artistic training in Detroit, but no record has been found to support this. There are indications that he was employed in Grand Rapids, Michigan before moving to Detroit. He was living in Manhattan, New York on 5 June 1917 when he completed his WWI Draft Registration. His occupation was listed at "Artist, Self employed". His registration noted that he was the sole support for his mother and wife. Ellinger served as a private in Company 8, Ninth Coast Artillery Corps, during WWI. Carlton was married to Mary L. Snyder between 1910 and 1917, probably closer to 1910. Mary was also born in Michigan. The Ellingers were still living in Manhattan in 1920 where Carlton was employed as a "Commercial Artist". By 1930 Carlton and Mary had relocated to Bronxville, Westchester County, New York and Carlton was still employed as a "Commercial Artist". Carlton worked for several printing companies in Michigan and New York, starting before 1910. Mention of Carlton in printing trade journals and advertisements started before 1920. There are few mentions of his work as a fine artist.

Carlton Ellinger
                      advertising flyer

Advertising example

    Carlton was a member of the Salmagundi Club in 1925 and the Artists Guild of the Author's League of America (New York City). He is mentioned in Davenport's Art Reference and Price Guide, Who Was Who in American Art by Falk, William Morris: Ornamentation and illustrations from the Kelmscott Chaucer by William Morris and
Some Examples of the Work of American Designers by Bowles.
     The last reference to Carlton found using Google was a mention in 1947 in Financial World, Volume 88. He was employed by Sun Life Assurance of Canada.

Carlton D.
                Ellinger signature

Carlton D. Ellinger signature

unnamed oil by Kathryn M. Taylor

unnamed, Kathryn M. Taylor, 16" x 20", oil on canvas board

    Kathryn Ross Munro was born on 24 March 1879 in Quebec, Canada a daughter of Thomas Barclay Munro, who was also a fine artist. Thomas Barclay was born in Scotland in 1849 and emigrated to Canada some time after 1861. Kathryn attended McGill University in Montreal. She apparently came to the U. S. some time after 1900 and was married to Irving Taylor in the U. S. or Canada about 1902. After losing two children as infants, Irving also died and about 1905 Kathryn married Irving's cousin Franklin E. Taylor who was a lawyer and later a judge. They had two children, one Franklin Jr., who died as a child. Franklin and Kathryn resided in Brooklyn, New York for several decades from the time of their marriage, eventually relocating to Great Neck, New York. The Taylors were apparently well off as they employed a servant in 1920 and 1930 during the censuses. Franklin's occupation was given as "Lawyer" in 1910 and 1920 and as "Cty. Ct. Judge" in 1930. No occupation was given for Kathryn in census records. Kathryn was an artist for most of her life, but is not listed in any art reference work and no records of her exhibiting her work have been found, though she may have done so. She is sometimes confused with another Kathryn Taylor who is listed and worked and exhibited in Washington, D. C. in the early 1900s. Several of her descendants were also artists.
    Katherine died about 1961 in Great Neck, New York. Franklin died in the late 1940s. Biography in progress.......

K. Taylor signature

Taylor's short signature

Kathryn M. Taylor signature
Kathryn M. Taylor full signature

Paul Bachem "Country Landscape, Up
                Country NY"

"Country Landscape, Up Country, NY", Paul Bachem, 9" x 16", oil on board

    Paul Bachem is a New York plein aire painter. He has a web site. Bachem had a long career as a freelance illustrator before devoting himself to fine art. He is an associate member of the New York Plein Air Painters and a founding member of the Long Island Plein Air Painters Society. The painting above is the first painting by Paul that I added to my collection in 2008-9. It is such an odd size that I have never had it framed, though it would be easy to do at I just have it sitting on the top of the window frame in my middle bay window. Paul told me that this was done in his old style before he started painting en plein aire using techniques and palettes used by his favorite artist. 

                  Bachem "Tracks"

"Moonrise", Paul Bachem, 8" x 10", oil on board

    "Moonrise" is a sketch for a larger painting of the same name. The larger painting was 11" x 14". This sketch was painted en plein aire on an unseasonably warm winter morning on the last day of January in 2011.

"Sunday Morning, Field 5" by Paul

"Sunday Morning, Field 5", Paul Bachem, 11" x 14",  oil on canvas

    Paul made the following comment about this painting:

"Painted on July 31st 2011 at the Glen Cove City Stadium in Glen Cove, NY. I practically grew up on these fields and the place has hardly changed over the past 45 years. It is a wonderful environment and it always feels good to be there."

Summer Breeze by Paul Bachem 9"x12"

"Summer Breeze", Paul Bachem, 9" x 12", oil on board

    Though I am not really collecting any more (Spring 2016) due to lack of wall and storage space, Paul put this little gem on sale and I impulse purchased it before I could restrain myself. It will be fun to search the local thrift shops again for the perfect frame and then spend an hour walking around my house for an hour trying to find a place to squeeze it in. Damn you, Paul! ;o)

"Red House on a Hill" Paul Bachem

"Red House on a Hill", Paul Bachem, 11" x 14", oil on canvas board

    When I purchased my first painting from Paul around 2008-9 I just missed getting this one which had just sold. Then in 2018 I found it for sale on ebay. Karma? Paul didn't keep track of the titles on his early works and couldn't remember what he titled it, but did remember exactly where this house is, Cold Spring Harbor, Long Island, NY, and that the CSH Library is just to the left of the house and up the hill and the harbor is just to the right of the house. He decided to call it "Red House on a Hill" after we exchanged a few emails.

Light and Geometry by Paul Bachem

"Light and Geometry", Paul Bachem, 11" x 14", oil on board

    This painting was on Paul's web site for a few years. I have always liked it and never understood why it didn't sell. I think it was just too different from his other works. I finally couldn't resist any longer and added to my collection. I am big on light and shadow and this is a very nice exercise.

Blizzard Walk 21" x 15" oob

"Blizzard Walk", Paul Bachem, 21" x 15.25", oil on board

    This painting was actually done for a book cover, but I think it can easily stand on its own as a piece of fine art. The book was "Day of the Blizzard" by Marietta Moskin, Scholastic Inc., NY, 1997. It reminds me of another winter blizzard scene in my collection that has a woman in a red shawl struggling through the snow. One of my favorite paintings. It had also been on Paul's Illustrations page for quite a few years. When I finally bought it in December 2018, and tried to save the image to my computer, I found that I had already saved it from Paul's site in April of 2012. I guess it has been in the back of my mind!

                Baderian floral painting

unnamed, Ruth Baderian, 23" x 18", oil

    Ruth E. Baderian was born 2 July 1927 in the Bronx, New York, a daughter of John and Emma Tietjen. John was employed as a "Commercial Traveler, Tea & Coffee" in 1930. Ruth was married to Steven G. Baderian. Ruth earned a scholarship to the Art Students League in New York City. She was a teacher and artist in watercolors and oils. Baderian won numerous awards for her work from well known organizations including the Salmagundi Club, American Artists Professional League and Long Island University. Ruth Baderian was a signature member of the American Watercolor Society, and won the Grumbacher Gold Medal three times. She was a member of, and teacher at, the Art League of Long Island and a member of She is mentioned in Davenports Art Reference and Price Guide, Who's Who in American Art (1973, 1976), and Who Was Who in American Art by Falk. Her works appeared in The Best of Flower Painting, Artistic Touch 2 and Artistic Touch 3 as well as in "Watercolor Magazine" Winter 1999, and in "American Artist Magazine" April 1996.
    Ruth died on 17 December 2010 at Williston Park, Nassau County, New York.

Ruth Baderian

Dorise Olson Mina-Mora watercolor

unnamed, Dorise Olson Mina-Mora, 6" x 21", watercolor

    Dorise Evelyn Olson was born on 8 June 1932 in New York City, a daughter of Arthur and Anna Carlson Olson. Dorise attended at the Art Students League where she studied with Louis Bosa. She was a Salmagundi Club Scholar and studied under Daniel Greene. She married fellow artist Raul Jose Mina-Mora. She is mentioned in Who's Who in American Art (1989-1992), Who Was Who in American Art by Falk, Women Artists in America: 18th century to present (1790-1980) by Collins, Who's Who of American Women (1984), and Who's Who in the East by Marquis.
    Dorise died on 29 June 1991 in Oakdale, Suffolk County, New York. Raul died on 30 May 1996.

Olson Mina-Mora signature

Judith Hausman painting

unnamed, Judith Hausman, 24" x 30", oil

    Judith "Judy" Hausman was born on 13 February 1916 in Antwerp, Belgium, a daughter of Elias Jacob and Mary Stern. The Sterns arrived in New Orleans on 10 September 1941 on the S.S. Shawnee from Havana, Cuba. Elias gave his occupation as "Diamond Merchant", and his children's names as Irena, Ruth, Judith, and Menachem. Their race was given as "Hebrew", and all were born in Antwerp, Belgium, except for Elias who was born in Szerencs, Hungary. Judith married Gershon Hausman. The Hausmans settled in New York City. According to her obituary, Judy was an artist, though no other records of her work as an artist have been found. She is not listed in any art reference book.

HAUSMAN-Judy (nee Stern) died suddenly in Jerusalem on July 22. Beloved wife of the late Gerson Hausman. Loving & loved mother of Miriam Hausman, Evelyn and Sylvain Jakabovics and Reva Hausman. Treasured Grandma of Andrew, Allison & Barrie Jakabovics. Dearest sister of Ruth Danis, the late Menahem Stern and the late Irene Banitt. Precious aunt, sister-in-law and cousin. Exceptional friend to so many, patron of many causes, artist and painter of great vitality.

HAUSMAN-Judith. Yeshiva University and its affiliated Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary mourn the passing of a long-time cherished friend and supporter. A painter and artist, whose works were exhibited in 1993 by the Yeshiva University Museum at the Cardozo School of Law Gallery, her joie de vivre expressed itself in the art of tzedakah and chessed. Together with her late beloved husband, Gershon, she was a YU Guardian and RIETS Fellow. They established the annual Hausman Stern Kinus Teshuva Lectures in New York and Jerusalem, consecrated to the memories of their parents, Elias J. and May Stern, and Moshe and Chava Hausman. Heartfelt condolences are extended to her children, Dr. Miriam Hausman, Dr. Evelyn (and Sylvain) Jakobovics and Reva Hausman, to her sister, Ruth Danis, and to the entire Hausman/Stern Family. May they be comforted among the mourners of Zion and Jerusalem. Dr. Norman Lamm, President Yeshiva University David S. Gottesman, Chairman Board of Trustees

HAUSMAN-Judith. The Jewish Center mourns the passing in Israel of its longtime loyal and devoted member. We fondly remember her elegance, gentleness and exceptional creativity. May her entire family be comforted among those who mourn for Zion and Jerusalem. Dr. Jacob J. Schacter, Rabbi Samuel Goldman, President Elza Weinman, Sisterhood

Judith Hausman signature

Judith Hausman signature

Ruth Erb Hoffman still life

"Small sculpture at Anna K.'s", Ruth Erb Hoffman, 7" x 5", oil

    Ruth Erb Hoffman was born in Buffalo, New York, a daughter of Lucius L. and Henrietta M. Erb. Lucius was working in Buffalo as real estate and insurance agent in 1910, 1920, and 1930. Ruth was still living at home in 1930 working as a "teacher of art, at home".

Ruth Erb, verso

Verso, Ruth Erb Hoffman painting

    The back of this painting has extensive information about this painting's history, including Ruth E. Hoffman's signature. This painting was part of Hoffman's personal collection and later in the collection of Dr. Anthony J. Sisti.

M. Hise painting

unnamed, M. Hise, 9" x 12", oil

    I purchased this from a seller in Gladstone, New Jersey. When I queried the dealer about the source for the painting, he replied:

"I purchased this painting from another dealer, the artist name is Mary Hise, Mary Cathawne Hawley, formerly Mary Hise 1910-1983, artist from South Wales/East Aurora N. Y. area in western new York State. Mary painted from the 50's-70's"

    I queried the dealer about the spelling of the name "Cathawne" and he replied that was the spelling that was given to him. It is incorrect, though. I was easily able to find records for Mary, but nothing to indicate that she ever worked as an artist. I was able to contact a relative to try to determine if this identification is correct. This relative told me that, coincidentally, she had just attended a family reunion in July 2010, and was offered numerous paintings by Mary, which she accepted. The paintings were found in the basement of Mary's home which was being "vacated". She is working with her family historian to provide information about Mary's work as an artist.
    Mary Catherine Hise was born on 17 August 1910 at Kenmore, Erie County, New York, a daughter of John Herman Hise and Mary Evelyn Hoskyns. John was working as a farmer in 1920 in East Aurora, New York. Mary married Robert Emmet Hawley on 7 May 1927 at East Pembroke, New York. Robert and Mary were living next door to her parents in 1930. Robert was employed in "General Farming". John Hawley was employed as "Superintendent, City Dains (Drains?)". Mary had two children by 1930. Records for Robert and Mary after 1930 are scarce, except for the Social Security Death Index. There are no records of Mary's work as an artist, and it is curious that she would have signed using her maiden name. The record of her death uses her married name, so she was not divorced from Robert. She was married at the age of 16 and had five children, so would not appear to be someone with the access to the education or time to become an artist. She would have been in her 40s in the 1950s, so would probably still have had children at home. I am taking this identification with a grain of salt, until I can find some documentation to support it.
    All of this being said, I like this painting, both for the colors and the style. The dealer sold another painting, a 10" x 12" size, by the artist that was similar in style and colors, and equally well done. This artist was at least a talented amateur, and probably had some formal training.
    Mary Catherine Hawley died on 15 December 1983 in South Wales, Erie County, New York. Robert died on 7 January 1962 in Buffalo, New York.

M. Hise signature

M. Hise signature

Italo George (Barrel) Botti, dancer or
                gymnast painting

unnamed, George Barrel (aka Italo George Botti), 31" x 25", oil

   Italo George Botti was born on  24 March 1923 in Greenwich Village, New York a son of Ettore and Filomena Botti, Italian immigrants. The Bottis immigrated to the US on 22 August 1920 from Agripoli, Italy on the S.S. Duca Degli Abruzza. Ettore's occupation was give as "Tailor" on the ship's passenger list and as "Tailor, Clothing Co." on the 1930 census of Brooklyn, New York. Several Botti men and their families were his neighbors in 1930; James "boot black, shoe shine parlor", Dominick "laborer, railroad", and Biase "laborer, lithograph co". These men may have been brothers of Ettore, as all were near him in age.    
Italo G. Botti was well known for his painting, stained glass, sculpture, and mosaic work. Botti attended the Brooklyn Academy of Fine Arts, Leonardo da Vinci School of Art, the Abracheff School of Fine Art, the National Academy of Design, and the Art Students League. He studied under Frank Vincent Dumond, Nicolai Abracheff, Reginald Marsh, and Bernard Lamott. An example of his mosaic work may be seen on the Botti Studio web site. He taught at the City College of New York, the Art Students League, and the Art Institute of Chicago. As it turns out Botti is listed in Davenports Art Reference and Price Guide, Who Was Who in American Art by Falk, and is also mentioned on a couple of the more popular on line art web sites.

Barrel example    Barrel
                    example    Barrel
                    example    Barrel

                    nude    Barrel

Examples of Barrel's work

   Botti painted under the pseudonyms "George Barrel" and "Barrel Botti", before starting to use his birth name, Italo Botti. This may have only been true while he worked with Arts International and other galleries. He seems to have signed his work either Barrel or Botti in block letters. This piece caught my eye as I skimmed ebay. I paid very little for it, without researching it and kind of kicked myself afterward, expecting it to turn out to be an import or by an obscure artist, though the seller claimed he was "listed". The seller was  completely clueless as to the identity of the artist, claiming it was by W. R. Barrel, despite the fact the George Barrel's biography and the original sales receipt were attached to the back of the painting! Yes, hard to believe, but true. I am including several images of Botti's work as George Barrel, found on the Internet, since he is something of a mystery artist under the pseudonym Barrel. I am reasonably certain that all of these works are by the same artist. I was quite surprised when an Internet search fairly easily turned up several auction records for his work and other sellers with his work for sale. All of the works are largish, the smallest I have seen listed was 24" x 36". A couple of the auction houses who brought his work up for sale don't sell junk, so his work seems to be considered of value. He is frequently misidentified as W. R. Barrel for some reason, though I had no difficulty in determining that Botti painted under other names. Of course the biography taped to the back of the painting helped. It should also be noted that there was an Argentinian artist named Italo Botti (1889-1974) and there also seems to be some amount of confusion between these two artists. One of the paintings shown above was attributed to the elder Botti, but the style is more in keeping with that of the younger artist.

Barrel signature

George Feldman watercolor

unnamed, George Feldman AWS, 8" x 11", watercolor, 1986

    Dr. George Feldman was born 13 October 1897 in New York City, New York, a son of Isaac and Fannie Feldman, Austrian immigrants. Isaac Feldman owned a tailor shop. George gave his occupation as "dental student" on his WWI draft registration. He applied for a passport in 1923, giving his occupation as dentist, and his intent to travel to Germany, Switzerland, and France to "study". There is no indication if he was studying dentistry or art, or both. He was living alone during the 1930 census of New York City, occupied as a dentist. There are numerous mentions of him on passenger lists for various ocean voyages to Europe. He traveled frequently in the 1920s and 1930s.
    Feldman is listed in Falk's Who Was Who in American Art, where it is noted that he was a painter, cartoonist, craftsperson, and graphic artist. He painted in both oils and watercolors. Feldman attended the Art Students League and New York University. He was a member of the American Watercolor Society. He exhibited at the 1939 World's Fair in New York City, and at the American Watercolor Society, Brooklyn Museum, Morton Gallery, and Chautauqua, NY. He was 89 when he painted the painting my collection. There is a bit of glare from the glass. I will get a better photo, by and by. This may not be his best work, but I like that he kept painting. His signature is very strong, so he may have retained his skills. I have not been able to find any other examples of his work for comparison.
    George Feldman died on 9 April 1997 in Ithaca, NY at the age of 99.

Feldman signature

unnamed Cyril Ledoux painting

unnamed, Cyril Ledoux, 13" x 16", oil

    Cyril Joseph Ledoux (pronounced "le doo") was born on 19 July 1894 in New York City, New York, a son of Alexander J. and Theresa M. Ledoux. Another son, Sylvester, was born in Pennsylvania in 1895. Alexander was an immigrant from French Canada and employed as a laborer in Manhattan, New York in 1900, as a candy maker in a confectionery shop in Saratoga Springs, NY in 1910, and as a laborer in a machine shop in Elmira, NY in 1920. I have seen indications that he came from Quebec, but have not been able to confirm this. According to New York city directories Cyril was a student in Saratoga Springs in 1910, employed at the National Aluminum Works in Elmira in 1914 and 1915, a toolmaker at the Arsenal in Troy in 1918,  an employee of "K V Co" in Elmira and toolmaker in Troy in 1920, and so on. On 5 June 1917, when Cyril completed his WWI draft registration card, he was residing in Elmira, and employed as toolmaker for the Willys-Morrow Mfg. Co. During the 1920 census, Cyril and his brother, Sylvester, were employed as toolmakers in a machine shop. During the 1930 census, Cyril was living in Rochester, NY as a lodger in a private home, working a "designer, machine tool co.". Cyril married Anne Rose Mattes about 1935 and their son, Cyril Joseph Jr. was born on 14 June 1936. From 1936-1960 Cyril is listed as a designer in Rochester city directories. The address he was employed at appears to be for the Delco Appliance Company. Prior to 1930, this company was called the North East Electric Company and Ledoux may have worked there then, as well. Ledoux was mentioned in the American Magazine of Art in 1930, and in the Proceedings of the Rochester Academy of Science in 1953. Ledoux received his training as a toolmaker at the Rochester Athenaeum and Mechanics Institute, what is today known as the Rochester Institute of Technology. It is not known where he received his artistic training.

Unamed Ledoux painting two

unnamed, Cyril Ledoux, 13" x 16", oil, 22 October 1927

    Ledoux started painting at the age of 19, about 1913, according to his daughter. He was a painter in oils, etcher, engraver, jewelry designer, and photographer. His family still owns his engraving press. He was the secretary of the Rochester Art Club (RAC), 1928-1930. Ledoux was selected to design a mace for the University of Rochester. Ledoux developed his own photographs, though I have not found any information to indicate that he exhibited his photographic work. He painted in the company of Carl William Peters and Edward Siebert. Siebert painted his portrait, which is still in the possession of the family. Ledoux was the Secretary at the 29 January 1929 meeting of the RAC, when Carl W. Peters was one of 20 members present. Cyril Ledoux exhibited at the Buffalo Artists Association Albright Gallery Show in 1927 and 1928, and at the Rochester Art Club annual show in 1930. He taught at the Rochester Art Gallery and exhibited at the first Clothesline Show at the Memorial Art Gallery in Rochester in 1958. He had a lengthy career as a painter, likely created numerous paintings and exhibited his work many times. He is not documented in any art reference book, though, and despite his exhibition record and association with some notable regional artists, there is little interest in his work and his paintings tend to sell for minimal amounts.
    All of the paintings in my collection are painted on boards except for one large painting on canvas. Two other large paintings on canvas I have seen were marine scenes.

Cyril Ledoux
                      "Autumn afternoon"

"Autumn afternoon", Cyril Ledoux, 8" x 10", oil (Buffalo Society of Artists 1927 exhibition label)

    Several of the paintings in my collection are dated, and two have exhibition labels with titles of the paintings. I really like the way Ledoux captured the bright colors of the New England fall. These may have been plein air paintings, though the first painting displayed above, and "Medley of Spring", appear a bit complex for that. The fact that two are fully dated, leads me to believe they were more likely painted en plein air.

Cyril Ledoux Winter Trees

unnamed, Cyril Ledoux, 13" x 16", oil

    Cyril Ledoux died in December 1976 in Rochester, and was buried in the Holy Sepulcher Cemetery in Rochester on 13 December 1976. He designed his own tombstone and the tombstone for his parents' grave in Elmira, NY. Anne R. Ledoux died on 16 February 1999 in Rochester. Some of the information in this biography was gathered in a telephone call to Ledoux's daughter in April 2010.

Cyril Ledoux "Medley of

"Medley of Spring", Cyril Ledoux, 16" x 20", oil, 13 April 1930  (Rochester Art Club exhibition label)

    Ledoux exhibited the painting above at the Rochester Art Club during the period that he served as secretary of that organization. This painting still bears the exhibition label from the 1930 show.

Cyril Ledoux, Rochester
                  Art Club exhibition label            Ledoux
                  Buffalo Society of Artists exhibition label

Exhibition labels from Ledoux's paintings.

Ledoux signature

                signature two

Examples of Ledoux's signature from paintings

Ledoux World War One draft
                registration signature

World War I draft card signature

unname by Cyril Ledoux Sr.

Cyril Joseph Ledoux, 25" x 30", oil on canvas

    I paid $20 for the painting above on ebay and did not think too much of it at the time, but it was the largest painting by Ledoux that I had had the opportunity to purchase. I was quite pleasantly surprised at how much I liked the painting, once I saw it in "the flesh". In person, it has much greater depth and complexity, and the colors are much richer than in this image that the seller provided. Ledoux definitely had a unique style and I am not sure why his work does not sell for higher prices. His work is quite different from that of his contemporaries, so perhaps that accounts for the low prices his work brings.

Stickling Inn at Silver Bay YMCA

"The Inn at Silver Bay YMCA of the Adirondacks", Ruth Strickling, 8" x 10", watercolor

    Ruth Strickling was born 8 October 1922 in the Bronx, New York, a daughter of Joseph and Elizabeth K. "Elsie" Meinberg Gorman. In 1930 Joseph was employed as a "Coal Co., proprietor". Ruth married Harry Lenin Strickling on 5 August 1949 in the Bronx, New York. They lived in the Bronx from 1949 to 1955 when they relocated Dumont, New Jersey. They moved to Silver Bay, New York in 1970.

Ruth Strickling
                  "Auditorium at Silver Bay"

"Auditorium at Silver Bay", Ruth Strickling, 8" x 10", watercolor

    Ruth attended Hunter College where she majored in biology. Her drawing ability helped her grades and in her senior year she took a watercolor class and got "hooked". After graduation, she studied at the Art Students League in New York City, and went to work in an advertising agency. She next went to work at Famous Studios as an animator and her subjects included Popeye, Casper the Friendly Ghost, and others. While living in Dumont, she was a member of the Hackensack Art Club where she entered juried shows and exhibited locally. Her personality was very energetic, which is why she liked to work in watercolors, according to her daughter.
    Strickling was apparently thrifty as she painted on both sides of the paper when she created these watercolors. Unfortunately, whoever matted these paintings used scotch tape around all four sides to mount them to the mats. It would probably be very difficult to remove the tape without damaging the paintings.

Ruth Strickling Lake

unnamed, Ruth Strickling, 8" x 10", watercolor

    Ruth was an art teacher and artist. She taught continuing education courses at a local high school. She worked for many years as an instructor of watercolor painting at the Watson Art Center at the Silver Bay YMCA of the Adirondacks. She became the head of the Art Department there and was a well respected member of the staff. She was a prolific artist in watercolors and sold many watercolors while at Silver Bay. She also taught at the Tenafly Adult School in Tenafly, New Jersey and was active in the arts community of Dumont and the vicinity.

Strickling Trees

unnamed, Ruth Strickling, 10" x 8", watercolor

    Ruth Strickling died on 20 January 2009 in Dumont, New Jersey. Harry Strickling died on 31 July 2007.

Strickling signature

Lambo "To grandmother's house"

"To Grandmother's House", Donald W. Lambo, 10" x 14", watercolor

    Donald W. Lambo was born on 3 December 1921 in Amsterdam, New York, a son of John O. and Anna M. Lambo. John was an Italian immigrant and Anna was a German immigrant. Both immigrated to the US in the late 1880s. John was working as a "loom fixer, rug mill" in 1930. Donald worked as an illustrator for many years and I found numerous books that he supplied the illustrations for. He later started working as a fine artist. His wife was also a fine artist.

Lambo label

Label verso

    This label was glued to the back of the painting, and gives a brief biography of Lambo. I am not sure if this painting falls under the category of fine art or illustration. It may have started as an illustration and later was sold as fine art.

Lambo title


    Lambo died on 9 January 2008 in Croton on Hudson, Westchester, New York. His obituary appeared in a local newspaper:

Well-known Putnam Valley artist Don Lambo died January 9, 2008 at the age of 86. Don and his wife, Betty, both professional artists, exhibited their watercolor paintings throughout the east. Don was recognized with many awards and his work is in numerous public and private collections. Don was born in Amsterdam, New York, December 3, 1921 and entered the Air Force in 1942. After the war he attended Pratt Institute and pursued a career as a book illustrator for many years while raising a family in Peekskill and later, Putnam Valley. In the early 1970's he branched out to fine art. He particularly loved to paint the pastoral scenes of Putnam Valley. He is survived by his four children: Christine Jennings of Portland, OR; Philip Lambo of Millbrook, NY; Susan Cowan of Minden, NV and James Lambo of Croton-on-Hudson, NY; five grandchildren and two great grandchildren.

Widmayer portrait

unnamed, Elizabeth Widmayer, 18" x 14", oil

   Elizabeth L."Betty" "Liz" Widmayer was born 28 January 1926 in Queens, New York, a daughter of Walter and Bessie Widmayer. Walter was occupied as a chauffeur in 1920 and a "hacksman, taxical" in 1930. For many years Betty lived with her sister, Joan Widmayer, at 333 57th St., New York City, according to old telephone directories. This relationship is proved by the obituary of their brother, Walter J. Widmayer, who died in New Smyrna Beach, Florida on 11 January 1997. This address is written on the back of many of Betty's paintings, along with her name. Joan used the pseudonym Walters in the music business, and possibly in other ventures. I have also found references to her as Joan Walters Widmayer. One record for a Joan Widmayer identifies her as a student at the Frostburg State Teachers College.  I have no proof that this is the same woman. Joan was born in November 1930. Betty and Joan copyrighted several songs in the late 1970s and early 1980s as the team of Walters and Widmayer.

Elizabeth Widmayer
                      "seated woman"

unnamed, Elizabeth Widmayer, 38" x 28", oil

    A Betty Widmayer is mentioned in "Savage Art: A biography of Jim Thompson". She was identified as "a young graphic artist in charge of layout and design" at the New York magazine "Police Gazette" in 1951. An Elizabeth Widmayer of New York was a patron member of the American Society of Portrait Artists. I have seen claims that she was a fashion model with an "outgoing and positive personality", but cannot confirm that. A significant number of her paintings were offered on ebay in late 2009 by several sellers, so it is possible they came from her estate, or the estate of a relative. All of the work by I have seen by Widmayer has been figurative. She was an accomplished artist, but I have not found listings for her in any art reference book, any records of exhibitions of her work, and no auction records for her work, except on ebay.
    After her death, a lot of fashion illustrations, prints and proofs, signed by Elizabeth was purchased at a nearby 58th Street estate sale. The dated proofs and prints were from the late 1960s. The work was done for various New York fashion publications, including Bergdorf Goodman, the Ritz, Lord & Taylor and Abercrombie and Fitch. The work bore the Widmayer's 57th street address and some bear the name of Jane Walters as Elizabeth's representative.     
    Betty Widmayer died on 16 September 2008 in New York City.

Widmayer inscription

Gardner painting

unnamed, Catherine H. Gardner, 12" x 16", watercolor

    Mrs. Catherine H. Gardner was born on 20 November 1901 in Gridletree, Worcester, MA. She married James E. Gardner about 1936 in Poughkeepsie, Dutchess County, NY. The source for her birthplace a 1936 passenger list, likely at the time of her honeymoon. She was a member of the Dutchess County Art Association of Poughkeepsie, New York. She served as Treasurer of that organization. She was a frequent exhibitor at the shows sponsored by the art association. She exhibited oils and watercolors in the 1930s and 1940s. In 1942, one of her watercolors, "Manchester Bridge Houses", was chosen for a WWII Victory Calendar. Each month featured a painting by a Dutchess County artist. Her painting was used for the month of December. The announcement of the winners of the calendar contest was made by Mrs. Franklin D. Roosevelt. Mrs. Gardner is mentioned several times in the Poughkeepsie Eagle News, Poughkeepsie Daily Eagle, and the Harlem Valley Times, in connection with her work as an artist. The names of her paintings are often given, and the themes of her work appear to have been coastal scenes and florals. Her works were often described as "brightly colored". She is not mentioned in any art reference book that I have examined, but I have found several mentions of her works in auction records. I was not able to locate her in census records or other primary records. She resigned as Art Supervisor in the Dutchess County public schools in December of 1936, possibly due to her marriage. She and her husband appear in numerous Poughkeepsie City Directories. James appears with his parents in the 1920 and 1930 Federal census records of Poughkeepsie.
    Catherine Gardner died December 1984 in Poughkeepsie. James was born on 28 September 1908 in New York and died in Poughkeepsie on 25 August 1984. James was a WWII veteran of the US Navy, enlisting in 1944.

Gardner signature

Catherine H. Gardner signature

Kamen painting

unnamed, Samuel Kamen, 30" x 20", oil

    Samuel Kamen was born 15 June 1911 in Brooklyn, Kings County, New York, a son of Mitchel and Ray Eisenberg Kamen. Mitchel Kamen was Jewish and immigrated to the US in 1888 from Russia. The parents of Ray Eisenberg Kamen were also Russian Jews, though she was born in New York and was about 14 years younger than Mitchell. Mitchell Kamen owned a clothing store during the censuses in 1910, 1920, and 1930. The Kamens retained their Jewish heritage and I found records of the bar-mitzvahs of Mitchell and Ray's three sons. I have found indications that Mitchell Kamen shortened his name from Kamenetzky. Samuel Kamen married Edith Segal after 1930. Segal was a well known poet and political activist. Segal was also well known for her career as a dancer. Kamen was a life long resident of Brooklyn.

Kamen Flowers

unnamed, Samuel Kamen, 24" x 18", oil

    Samuel Kamen was a painter, designer and lithographer. He studied at the Art Students League and National Academy of Design. He was best known as a watercolor artist, though many of his abstract and figural works in oils and acrylics have appeared in large numbers on ebay since the mid 2000s.

abstract by Samuel

unnamed, Samuel Kamen, 11.75" x 11", oil on paper

    Samuel Kamen was listed Who's Who in American Art in 1959. His work was featured Artnews in 1946, in the January 1955 edition of American Artist magazine and again in American Artist in 1961. Kamen illustrated several of his wife's poetry books. Kamen's watercolor techniques are examined in Watercolor Your Way by Carl Schmalz 1978 and Watercolor Painting Step-by-Step by A. L Guptill. He exhibited widely, for instance, at the annual exhibition of the American Watercolor Society in 1944. Kamen's work was shown at the 75th Anniversary Exhibition of Painting & Sculpture by 75 Artists at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 1951. Kamen was a member of the American Watercolor Society and Brooklyn Society of Artists and received awards for his work from both societies.

   Samuel Kamen's death was reported in Jewish Currents magazine:

Jewish Currents - Volume 49 - Page 40, January 1995 The Kinderland Mishpokhe mourns with the Kamen Family and Edith Segal the passing of her husband, co-worker and helpmate SAMUEL KAMEN (June 16, 1911— Aug. 29, 1995) Sam participated actively in the cultural life of Camp and was our true friend. Board of Camp Kinderland We mourn the loss of SAMUEL KAMEN Artist and friend in the struggle for peace Sheila Cohen Berkowitz Shirley and Dudle Bernstein Doina and Danny Dubinsky Judy and Stretch Jacobs Annette and ...

Kamen signature

Samuel Kamen's signature

    Samuel and Edith Segal Kamen are buried in the Mount Lebanon Cemetery in Glendale, Queens County, NY, near Kamen's parents and other members of his family.

Arthur Silkman unnamed
unnamed, Arthur Silkman, 30" x 24", oil

    Arthur K. Silkman was born on 15 July 1919 in New York City, a son of William and Mildred "Millie" Harris Silkman. William and Mildred were born in London, England. William was of Russian/Jewish and English ancestry and Mildred of Polish ancestry. The Silkmans immigrated to the US in 1908 and the Harris family immigrated in 1912. William and Millie were married on 6 October 1918 in New York City. Both became naturalized US citizens in the 1920s. William was employed as a painter in 1910 and 1917, usually working for building contractors. He was employed as a furniture upholsterer in 1920. I have not been able to locate the Silkman family in 1930. William did fill out a draft registration form in 1943, giving Millie as his next of kin. They also had a daughter, Jacqueline who was born 7 May 1922 and died unmarried on 25 December 2005 in Queens Village, Queens, New York. Millie and her children traveled to England in 1929 and 1937. William did not accompany them. Jacqueline testified before a Congressional committee in 1959 regarding the difficulty in finding adequate nursing home care for her mother and aunts. She was employed by the Department of Health at the time.
    I have not been able to find out much about Arthur's education and work as an artist. This painting likely came from an auction of New York City storage liquidations of Benson Seto and Arthur Silkman held at the Gary R. Wallace auction house in Parsonfield, Maine in July 2008. I do not have any information regarding the story of the sale. According to the seller of this painting, Arthur Silkman received the Grumbacher Art Award at the Arts Interaction 9th Annual Spring Show in 1987. I have not been able to confirm this. Other information I have seen suggests that Silkman exhibited at the Salmagundi Club and was associated with the Knickerbocker Artists. I contacted the Salmagundi club's curator, and he informed me that they have no record of Silkman exhibiting there and no one there has ever heard of him. The curator is attempting to locate members of the Knickerbocker Artists, a surprisingly elusive group. Silkman seems to have been a formally trained and accomplished artist but is not listed in any art reference resource. I am still researching him.
    For some reason, a search for Arthur Silkman on shows that his household was made up of Marvin P. Scilken, Mary P. Scilken, and Gertrude Silkman, though the telephone number is disconnected. The address listed is 330 W. 28th Street, Apt 9F, New York, New York. Marvin H. Scilken was a noted librarian and his wife was named Mary. I was able to contact Mr. Scilken's sister and she told me she had never heard of Arthur Silkman. This is probably just a mix up of old directory service information.
    Silkman enlisted as a private in the US Army on 9 December 1941, his occupation recorded as "photographers, marital" and his education as high school graduate. He returned to the US on 19 September 1945 a member of the 272nd Infantry Regiment. His arm of service was listed as "Engineers".
    Arthur Silkman died on 15 November 2005 in New York City.

Arthur Silkman signature

Arthur Silkman signature


"Woman on a couch", Erisa Yuki, 27" x 22", oil

    Erisa Yuki is a New York artist. There are a couple of women by this name involved in the art scene in New York City. One of these women exhibited her paintings at the School of Visual Art in 2008. The other is a fashion designer who was active from the mid-1990s to the present and seems to have been known for her wedding dress designs. I am not sure which artist's work this is, if there is a third woman by this name, or if the two artists are the same person.


"S B Ranch", John Thomason, 11.5" x 15.5", watercolor, 1944

    John Thomason was born on 14 December 1903 in the Bronx, New York City of an English father and a German mother. His parents were Samuel and Hedwig A. “Hattie” Koch Thomason. Samuel was a successful bricklayer who died between 1920 and 1930. The family was well off enough to have a live-in maid in 1910 and 1920. John was still living at home in 1930, the oldest son in the household. He was a laborer working as a bricklayer at the time as were his two younger brothers. This identification is possible because, in addition to signing his name on the back of one of his oils, he also included his address, 1559 Undercliff Avenue, an address found in the Bronx, New York. The family was residing there in 1920 and 1930 during the censuses.



Signature from "S B Ranch"

  So far, I have seen only four examples of Thomason's work; an oil painting dated 1930, my watercolor painting dated 1944, another undated oil painting, the one with the address written on back, and an example of an oil painting in a book. Thomason signed all three oils in block letters on the front, but also signed two in cursive verso. He also wrote the titles of the paintings and other descriptive information on the back of two of the oil paintings. The watercolor is signed in cursive on the front. Luckily, Thomason’s cursive signature was consistent and distinctive. He always continued the horizontal line of the letter “T” in his last name to create the letter “h’ and then the rest of the letters of the name in one stroke of the pen. I was contacted by a gentleman from Rochester, New York who also has several of his paintings and Monroe Community College in Rochester, New York also has a large collection of his work.


Signature verso "Johnson Foundry Homes"

        Thomason’s is sometimes confused with John William Thomason Jr., a career Marine Corps officer who was also a writer, artist, and illustrator. I sent images of these paintings and signatures to the Special Collections Librarian at the Newton Library at Sam Houston State University, JWT Jr.’s alma mater. The Library has over 2,000 examples of his work in their collection. The librarian assured me that the work and signature of John Thomason were very different than that of JWT Jr. Judging by the examples that I have seen, the work of John Thomason, the subject of this biography, is much more sophisticated than the work of JWT Jr., who's art seems to be mostly drawings, illustrative sketch work, and a small amount of watercolors mostly used as cover art for his books. To further confuse identification, both men studied at the Art Students League in New York City.


"Johnson Foundry Homes", John Thomason, 15" x 9.5", oil

    John Thomason is listed in Davenport’s Art Reference and Price Guide as a 20th Century New York artist. John Thomason is mentioned in Falk’s Who Was Who in American Art, 3 volumes edition, but I have not yet had the opportunity to examine Falk’s work, so do not known which John Thomason it is. John Thomason was one of six artists who were featured in an exhibition of oils and watercolors called “Exhibition of Paintings by a Group of Six” at a New York gallery, Barbizon-Plaza Art Galleries in 1941. The other artists were David Jacobson, T. Oscar Maine, Arthur Tilgner, Oscar Ralph Weidhass, and Edward Sunquist. This show ran from 22 September – 20 October 1941. All of these artists were active in New York City in the 1940s, though none seem to have gained enduring notoriety.
    Thomason received his early training as an artist in New York City high schools. He also studied at the National Academy of Design, Art Students League, Rochester Institute of Technology, and University of Rochester Memorial Art Gallery under Fritz Trautman. In 1963 Thomason went to Rochester, NY to teach at the newly opened Monroe Community College. He later became the Director of Art there and retired in 1970. His home and studio were on Conesus Lake in Geneseo, NY. His biography appears in Scenes of Monroe and Ontario Counties Past and Present by Anne Peacock-Jacobs. Thomason was active in the Rochester Art Club and Geneseo artists' groups. He exhibited in Rochester and New York City.
    John Thomason died in January of 1985 in Geneseo, New York.


Notation from verso of "Johnson Foundry Homes"

Walter Lynn Mosley "Mary
                Painting Along the Recreation Path"

"Mary Painting Along the Recreation Path", Walter Lynn Mosley, 14" x 18", oil, 2008

    Walter Lynn Mosley was born in 1960 in Hattiesburg, Mississippi and now lives in Brooklyn, NY. He received a BA in Art from San Jose State University and attended the Art Student's League. He studied under Bob Gerbracht, Maynard Stewart, and Frank Mason. He is a member of the Salmagundi Club, fellow of the American Artists Professional League, and a signature member of the New York Plein Air Painters. I like that every painting he does seems to be personal and unique to him, and he explains the location, context, and intent of the work as he did for this painting:

"This was painted last summer, 2008. It is a Stowe, Vermont painting done along the Recreation Path that is very popular among hikers, rollerbladers, bicyclers, etc. It is an excellent hike and offers wonderful views along the way. Besides the path this is a classic Vermont painting, lush in greens and showing mountains and trees of the type that I associate with Vermont. The painting was done looking east at sunset. A tree by the hillside casts a long shadow in the foreground. My friend and fellow artist, Mary Poerner is seen painting in the foreground in the shade. You can see all the accouterments of the artist, an easel and pack chair and she is wearing a large white floppy hat to shade her eyes for the purpose of painting the landscape."

    Mr. Mosley has a website and a blog. He sells his work under the ebay id of wlmartist. He does daily paintings and sells them on ebay, many of them plein air, as the painting above is. Capturing light is one of his motivations and one of the things that strongly draws me to his work.

Walter Lynn Mosley "Little
                Hunters Beach"

"Little Hunters Beach", Walter Lynn Mosley, 12" x 16", oil, 2004

"Painted en plein air• in 2004 on Mt. Desert Island, near Bar Harbor, in Acadia National Park. This scene is of a beach called "Little Hunters Beach" which is slightly off the beaten path, in fact it does take a short hike to get there, and then there are large cobblestones on the beach, so off the beaten path is a fairly accurate description. But it is a beautiful, peaceful spot and worth the effort of getting there I feel. I saw no one else there while I was there which was nice, and a contrast from the more popular Sand Beach. Swimming at "Little Hunters Beach" might not be recommended because, as I said, there are cobblestones rather than a sandy beach and the waters and rocks seem a bit treacherous. However, it is really a lovely, scenic spot and one well worth painting."

    The painting below attracted me because of the way the artist captured light and I also liked the little splash of motion from the figures in the middle of the painting.


"The Purple Beech Tree at Hyde Park", Walter Mosley, 12" x 16", oil

    Mosley also included a short paragraph about his motivation for this painting which is another thing that attracts me to his work. Even though these are plein air oil, which he paints every day, he takes the time to share his motivations and other interesting information. It is easy to see that he cares about his work and is just not cranking out "a painting a day":

"This was painted just this past summer, in Hyde Park, a National Park, and once the estate of the Vanderbilt family. On the grounds are some of the most exceptional trees to be found in the United States. Prior to the Vanderbilts taking over the area, another wealthy land owner landscaped the area, therefore the trees are several hundred years old and are among the largest of their species in the United States. To read more about the history of the grounds and there trees, and to see a picture of the purple beech tree in the painting itself, click here.

The purple beech gets it's name by the fact that the leaves can take on a deep hue of red-purple. I was drawn to this scene, the composition, by the majesty of the tree itself. In the background, a family of Indian origin picnic on the ground, a standing female figure can be seen with a colorful long flowing pink gown that the women of India are known for. The figures were quickly jotted down in the field (with no further manipulation later in the studio.)"


"Winter Shadows", Walter Mosley, 11" x 14", oil, 2007

    An example of a winter painting without snow. WLM had this to say about this one:

"Winter Shadows" was painted last year in winter (2007). It was painted in upstate New York in Brewster, NY, the name of the street is Seven Oaks Lane. This is a late morning painting in which my aim was to capture the moment of sunlight on a clear sunny, albeit wintry day. Aside from the various greens, mostly warm in tone by the sun, the painting is chiefly made up of a subtle interplay between blues, red-violets and blue-violets. The house and its tones intermingle with those of the trees behind and in front, yet clearly stands out because of the warmer tones which face the morning sunlight. A human presence is indicated (almost inconspicuously) by the parent and child walking along the street. There is a variety of textures used throughout the painting from thin washes for the sky and street to thick impastos for the trees, grass and house.


"White flowers in antique bottle", Walter Mosley, 14" x 11", oil, 2007

    I really like Walter's still lifes. This one seems jump off of the wall. I like that the bottle and flowers are slightly off center in the image.  Like the colors, too. I happened to have a wide mission-style frame in forest green that was perfect for this painting. Walter said about this one:

"This is a still life painting done in my north light studio in 2007. It is a painting of white flowers (shaped like small lilies) in an old antique glass bottle (before the screw-top was invented) with a maroon or wine colored backdrop."


"Portrait of Jean Joseph Marie Carries", Mosley after Sargent, 14" x 11", oil

"This was a demonstration for a student and has the quality of spontaneity of a work done in one sitting, all at once - "alla prima". It is a copy of a work by John Singer Sargent, his portrait of Jean Joseph Marie Carries. In the original Sargent signed his name along withe sitter's on the top of the canvas (with the back of the brush) and I likewise signed my copy with "Mosley a/Sargent" in the upper right."

    It is interesting to see the breadth of Mr. Mosely's work and his associations in the New York art community.


"Male nude w/ pole", Walter Mosley, 30" x 24", oil, 2009

"This was painted in January of this year (2009). It is a figure painting of a male nude with a pole in a dynamic pose. Painted at the Art Students League of New York, Studio 7, under north light (natural light)."

Walter Lynn Mosley
                      "Washington Square Park, New York"

"Washington Square Park, New York", Walter Lynn Mosley, 12" x 18", oil, 2010

"This was painted recently, in March 2010. It was painted in Washington Square Park in downtown New York city (Manhattan) on a clear, sunny day in the afternoon looking in a southern direction (away from the arch.)"

    This painting had some chips in it, so I sent it back to Walter and he filled them in, but also somewhat altered the painting, making some of the tree trunks more solid brown and maybe a few others things that did not jump out at me. The painting now looks somewhat different from the image of the early version. Both are very nice, though.


    Here are some artists whose work I really like but have not yet added to my collection:

    Michael McKee      Michael does beautiful work with pastels.


Some Helpful Links
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