1924 Glenn Hale Folk Art Painting
My stepfather was an auctioneer, a realtor and a farmer. And the story goes he was up in an attic, apparently looking at something, and this woman said, "I'm throwing this out on the trash pile." She said, "If you like it, take it, or we're burning it." So he took it home and it was in my mother's and his house for over 30 years, and we inherited it.
When people think of folk art, they might think of things made in the 18th and 19th century. But throughout the 20th century, there were a lot of folk artists who were busy at work. Here's an example painted, I think, in 1924.
You figured out, the man who painted the picture, his name is Glenn Hale.
We don't know anything about Glenn Hale.
Not a thing.
But one thing we can see is that Glenn Hale loved this farm. The family farm in this day and age is really endangered. There aren't too many of them left. And if we look at the picture, which, technically speaking, isn't particularly well painted, it shows his lack of academic training, but nonetheless, he knew how to paint. This picture comes from the soul, and it shows his love of landscape. We look at this Arts and Crafts bungalow-style house. This house would have been built somewhere early in the 20th century. At the time that the picture was painted, it was essentially a pretty new house. It's beautifully landscaped. Their daughter is sitting on the steps. She has her baby carriage. And as you go towards the center of the picture, there's a touring car driving by. There's a woman who's feeding chickens. Somebody has been interrupted from chopping wood. They've got their 19th-century hay wagon there, juxtaposed with the automobile.
You've got a fellow on horseback there, perhaps getting ready to bring the cows home. The artist changed his mind. There are a couple of cows that are totally painted over. Why he did that we'll never know. I love this picture. I think it's a total charmer. It's a little difficult to come up with a value on a picture such as this, by virtue of its size. A lot of people would say, "I love the picture, but I can't accommodate it." But it qualifies in my book as a first-rate example of American folk art from the early 20th century. So we quizzed each other at our table and came up with a consensus. For auction purposes, I would estimate the value of this picture between $10,000 and $15,000.
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