Mabel Alvarez
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MORGAN RUSSELL (1886-1953)
Morgan Russell Painting GARDEN OF GETHSEMENE  (St. Luke 27: 42-46)
Oil/Canvas     25½X12
Original strange frame made by Morgan Russell himself.
Note from Glenn Bassett:
      In the late 1980s, during a trip to Montclair, NJ, in connection with my giving them the 20 years of letters from Russell to Mabel Alvarez, I also looked up Herman Cherry (subject of Mabel Alvarez’s painting “Man with a Beard”), the artist who was one of the New York group that included Jackson Pollack, Willem de Kooning, etc.  Over lunch near his loft in Soho the fascinating Mr. Cherry told me a delightful story about this picture.  He and Russell were in Los Angeles at the same time in the early 1930s and knew each other.   One day he drove up to the house where Russell was staying, and there in the open garage facing the  street was Morgan, dressed in flowing women's clothes, high heels, his long hair falling down all over the task at hand hammering away trying to make a frame for one of his pictures.  Of course, Russell could never afford to have frames made.  Neither did he have a clue how to do it himself.  The thing turned out so badly mitered that one could see daylight around one corner of the picture.
 
      I asked Mr. Cherry if he remembered what the picture was, and he described this one!  When I told him I had the picture and it was working its way up my priorities list for a new frame he exclaimed, Oh no!  I shouldn't remove Morgan's frame.
     MORGAN RUSSELL
           (b. New York City 1886-d. Broomall, PA 1953)
 
      Morgan Russell was one of only three American painters who figured in the beginning of abstract art.  The others were Patrick Henry Bruce, who later renounced and burned his work, and Stanton Macdonald-Wright.  Russell and Macdonald-Wright invented the art movement, "Synchromism," the only art genre created by Americans, launched at Gallerie Bernheim-Jeune et Cie. in Paris in 1913.  (Art scholars have credited Russell with the original idea, after his study of color theory with the Canadian artist Ernest Percyval Tudor-Hart)  Synchromism, opposite to the usual approach to painting, relied on the use of pure color first, with form following later, if at all.
 
     After first studying architecture in New York, Morgan Russell was a student of "Ashcan" painter Robert Henri and of Matisse.  He settled in Paris in 1906, where he soon joined the circle of artists that surrounded Gertrude and Leo Stein.  Among these artists were Picasso, Matisse, Rodin, the poet Apollinaire, and Modigliani (whose portrait of Morgan Russell was in Henry Ford II's collection at the time of Mr. Ford's death.).  
 
     Russell first exhibited at the Salon d'Automne in Paris in 1910, and later at the New York Armory Show (1913), Neue Kunstsalon, Munich (1913), Salon des Artistes Independents, Paris (1913), Stendahl Gallery, Los Angeles (1932), Museum of Modern Art, New York (1951 and 1976), and many others in Europe and North America before the massive Montclair (New Jersey) Museum retrospective in 1990.  The Morgan Russell archive resides at the Montclair Museum.
 
     About 1916, Russell turned from Synchronism and returned to figurative painting and, after conversion to Roman Catholicism and a pilgrimage to Rome, included in his work some beautiful symbolic interpretations of scenes from the Bible.
                                                        
     Russell worked under the patronage of Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney in the early years and later, through the 1930s, with financial assistance from his friend and fellow artist Mabel Alvarez in Beverly Hills, California.  His first wife,  Emilie Francesconi, died in the late 1930's; his second wife, Suzanne, was a niece of Claude Monet.  In his 3 January 1946 letter to Mabel Alvarez announcing their marriage the day before he mused,  "Strange you will find it that her oncle (sic) was a person named Claude Monet!  Yes, when she was a little girl in 1906 playing in his Giverney gardens, I was in Paris hot-crazy over the founder of modern painting.  Life is curious isn't it?"   
 
     It was to the Pennsylvania estate of Suzanne's daughter, Denyse, Mrs. Atwater Kent, Jr., (herself a former student of Russell's), that they retreated in 1946, after their hard war years in the tiny French village of Aigremont, Yonne, and it was there that Russell died in 1953.
 
Provenance of the Morgan Russell pictures offered:
      Morgan Russell to Mabel Alvarez.
GEORGE BAXTER (1804-1867)
George Baxter Painting THE BRIDESMAID
Print     #260     Published 1855
Framed in Hogarth frame with Baxter mounts.
George Baxter Painting THE FRUIT GIRL OF THE ALPS
Print     #333      15¼x11 in.
After the French artist Huet.
On Baxter mount, with his embossed title and seal.
Published about 1859, just before Baxter retired.
George Baxter Painting A GROUP OF 25 ILLUSTRATED PLAYER'S CIGARETTE CARDS DEPICTING
ENGLISH STREET VENDORS
Individually matted and framed in a single frame
View larger image for details of each card.
George Baxter Painting HOLY FAMILY
Print     #234     
Inside cover, sheet music for pianoforte as solos and duets -
by William Hutchins Collcote. Music #4, 1849-1850
Framed in Hogarth frame with Baxter mounts.
George Baxter Painting THE LOVERS' LETTER BOX
Print     #359      Published 1856
From a painting by Jessie McLeod.
Framed in Hogarth frame with Baxter mounts.
George Baxter Painting THE DAY BEFORE MARRIAGE
Print     #353     Published 1853
Framed in Hogarth frame with Baxter mounts.
George Baxter Painting THE GARDENER'S SHED
Print     #275      Published April 16, 1856
On the back: Charles Satoon/Lewis 154 V.R.
From a painting by V. Bartholomew, Esq.
Framed in Hogarth frame with Baxter mounts.
George Baxter Painting VERONA (EVENING SCENE)
Print     #328     Music Sheet
Framed in Hogarth frame with Baxter mounts.
BOOKS ABOUT GEORGE BAXTER:

     THE PICTURE PRINTER OF THE NINETEENTH CENTURY, GEORGE BAXTER
          by C. T. Courtney Lewis, 363 pp - J. B. Lippincott Co., Philadelphia, 1910
 
     BAXTER COLOUR PRINTS, by H. George Clarke - Maggs Bros, London, 1919
 
     THE BAXTER PRICE LIST, 1924, C. T. Courtney Lewis, London
 
     THE BAXTER PRINT AUCTION PRICES, 1932, Compiled by J. H. Rylatt, President of the Baxter Society, London
 
     THE PRICE GUIDE TO BAXTER PRINTS, by A. Ball & M. Martin, Antique Collectors Club, England, 1974
 
     FINE PRINTS & GRAPHICS, California Book Auction Galleries San Francisco,        
           February 26, 1977
MISCHA ASKENAZY (1888-1961)
MISCHA ASKENAZY Painting MOTHER AND CHILD
Oil/Canvas     42X32     Signed Lower Left
*Stamped on reverse, in addition to the title is: THIS PAINTING IS NUMBER 4 FROM THE ESTATE OF MISCHA ASKENAZY.
PAUL SARKISIAN (born 1928)
PAUL SARKISIAN Drawing MASCULINE POWER
Pastel/Paper     Signed
PAUL SARKISIAN Drawing OLD PROSPECTOR
Pastel/Paper     Signed
PAUL SARKISIAN Drawing OLD WOMAN, NUDE
Pastel/Paper     Signed
PAUL SARKISIAN Drawing AGONY
Pastel/Paper
QING ZHONG MING (born 15 Sept 1938, Lives in Shanghai, China)
QING ZHONG MING Mural DETAILS AFTER THE MOGAO GROTTO MURALS, DUNHUANG, GANSU PROVINCE, CHINA
Oil on the artist's own hand-made replica of ancient Xuan Rice Paper, painted with a technique that he invented.
27X27     Framed
QING ZHONG MING Mural DETAILS AFTER THE MOGAO GROTTO MURALS, DUNHUANG, GANSU PROVINCE, CHINA
Oil on the artist's own hand-made replica of ancient Xuan Rice Paper, painted with a technique that he invented.
27X27     Framed
QING ZHONG MING'S Exhibitions (partial):  
                East-West Contemporary Art Gallery, Chicago - November, 1986
                Illinois State University Gallery, Bloomington -Feb. 20 - March 15, 1987
                New York City - November, 1987
                Kuwait - November, 1987
 
* Qing is famous in China as a set designer, as well as a painter.
OSAMU TSUJI, Japanese Artist (born 27 May 1943, Lives in Osaka, Japan)
Available Oil Paintings
OSAMU TSUJI Painting FLORAL STILL LIFE
Oil/Canvas     13X10
Signed
OSAMU TSUJI Painting SUNSET OF THE RIVER
Oil/Canvas     16X12
Signed
OSAMU TSUJI Painting LANDSCAPE
Oil/Canvas     16X12
Signed
OSAMU TSUJI Painting GREAT WALL OF CHINA
Oil/Canvas     12X16
Signed
OSAMU TSUJI Painting SUNSET OF SEA
Oil/Canvas     12X16
Signed
OSAMU TSUJI Painting HORSETAIL OF FIELD
Oil/Canvas     12X16
Signed
OSAMU TSUJI Painting WOMAN IN NUDE
Oil/Canvas     16X12
Signed
OSAMU TSUJI Painting WILD FLOWER
Oil/Canvas     13X10
Signed
HENRY R. MEASHAM, R.C.A. (b.1844, d.Nov. 1922)
HENRY R. MEASHAM Painting THE YOUNG HOPEFUL     30 Aug. 1893
(PORTRAIT OF ERIC ROBERTS, Conway, North Wales)
Oil/Canvas     26X18
There is evidence that the frame on this picture, though recently regilted, is the original 1893 frame.

Exhibited:
     Corporation of Manchester Art Gallery, Eleventh Autumn Exhibition, 1893
 
Provenance:  Purchased in the 1950s from Newman Gallery, Los Angeles
 
According to the British archives of art at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, this is the only Henry Measham painting known to be in the Western Hemisphere.

LABELS ON REVERSE OF PICTURE:
 
Handwritten, probably in the artist's hand:  
ARTIST - HENRY MEASHAM R.C.A.
26 KING STREET
ADDRESS     MANCHESTER

Adhered to back of canvas:
PORTRAIT OF
ERIC ROBERTS
age 9 years
Son of
WELLSLEY PEEL ROBERTS ESQR
 
PAINTED AUG. 30  1893 BY          
HENRY MEASHAM, R.C.A.      
 
Stamped on the canvas:
PREPARED BY
WINSOR & NEWTON LIMITED
28, RATHBONE PLACE
LONDON, W.
248702

HENRY R. MEASHAM, R.C.A. (b.1844, d.Nov. 1922)
  (Lived in Manchester, England, and various locations in Wales, primarily in Conway, North Wales.  Died in Manchester and interred in the Weaste Cemetery 14 November 1922.
 
Works Held:  City of Salford Art Galleries,
                    Manchester Museum of Art,
                    National Portrait Gallery, London.
 
Exhibited:  Manchester City Art Gallery
                 Royal Academy, London          
                 Academi Frenhinol Gymreig (Royal Cambrian Society) (He was a member.)
                 Royal Institute of Painters in Watercolour

ALBERT HERTER (1871-1950)
ALBERT HERTER Painting Master Rosenbaum (Portrait of Albert M. Rosenbaum, Jr.)      1914
Oil/Canvas     36X25
Signed upper left:  "ALBERT HERTER" underneath which appears the artist's device.
(The floral "device" which Herter used as part of his painting signature, a cherry blossom, was developed on his and Adele's honeymoon in Japan in 1893.  Adele's  device was a flowering wisteria.  The Herters originally created these devices as  emblems for the garments worn by their jinrikisha (rickshaw) men, but they soon adopted them as personal monograms.  
 
Note:  Albert and Adele Herter's son,   Christian A. Herter, was Governor of Massachusetts and later Eisenhower's last Secretary of State.
 
The beautifully painted background in this painting reflects Herter's fame as a designer of tapestries (Herter Looms).
 
The frame is original, an early 20th-century arts and craft frame probably made by Stanford White.
 
The picture was cleaned and revarnished for the first time in December, 1997 by James Greaves, Santa Monica, CA..
 
Provenance:   
 
Albert M. (18 Apr 1861 - 3 Nov 1927) and Nettie Rosenbaum, young Albert's parents
 
to Milton Meyers (formerly Milton Rosenbaum, born 1891), young Albert's older brother
 
to Fern Meyers (4 June 1900 - 27 December 1999), widow of Milton Meyers
 
to Mabel Alvarez  (Fern Meyers' sister, Pearl Rogers, was Mabel Alvarez' secretary.)
 

According to Mrs. Meyers' best memories of the story she was told, the Rosenbaums,  whom she never knew, commissioned Herter to paint their son after his impending death became known.  She didn't remember if she'd ever heard the cause of his death, but it was probably consumption.
 
This painting hung for many years in the same room in which, in 1947, the playboy/gangster Bugsy Siegel, who built the first gambling establishment in the little isolated desert spot called Las Vegas, was ambushed and killed.  The still-magnificent and famous house at 810 Prospect Drive, Beverly Hills, was owned by Milton and Fern Meyers until the early 1940s.  They sold it to the entertainer George Jessel.  Siegel's girlfriend Virginia Hill, I understand, was leasing the house, but I haven't heard whether or not from Jessel.
 
ALBERT M. ROSENBAUM, JR., born May 8, 1903, died February 6, 1915.  Interned with his parents in the Rosenbaum family mausoleum in the Home of Peace Cemetery (Plot 1, Section 6, Lot 1), 239 El Camino Real, Colma, California (south San Francisco area).  This cemetery plot was purchased in September, 1915, through Congregation Emanu El (now Temple Emanu El) in San Francisco (415-751-2535), and records of the Rosembaum family deaths are on file there.
 
A note about the boy's name:  It is probable that this family were not Ashkenazi Jews, or if they were it might be said that their temptation of fate proved disastrous.  Askenazi Jews traditionally avoid naming their sons "Junior" for fear the angel of death will confuse the generations and take the son before the father.  Notice that Albert Sr. lived more than 12 years longer than his son.
 
The mausoleum was vandalized in 1971 (Albert, the father, on top in the mausoleum; middle crypt open, no coffin in it; the boy on the bottom and no coffin visible from the little window where we looked in.), and none of the family could be contacted about it.  Fern, who married Milton long after he'd changed his name and moved to Beverly Hills, was already too old and incapacitated to have any interest in the matter.
WILLIAM EDEN (fl.1866-1898)
WILLIAM EDEN Painting REAPERS IN ENGLISH LANDSCAPE     1877
Oil/Canvas     27X39     Signed and dated lower right
*Plaque on front of frame erroneously dates it "1887."

PROVENANCE: Purchased in the 1950s from Newman Gallery, Los Angeles.
WILLIAM EDEN       (fl.1866-1898)
Listed in The Dictionary of Victorian Painters by Christopher Wood.
Landscape painter; worked in Liverpool, and later in London.  
Exhibited, Royal Academy, Society of British Artists, New Watercolour Society.  His subjects are all English views.
ROBERT KENNICOTT (1892-1983)
ROBERT KENNICOTT Painting BATHER     c. 1939
Oil/Canvas     18X16
ROBERT KENNICOTT (1892-1983)     

      Robert Kennicott's work often featured the human figure in various relaxed states. His 1939 portrait of a reclining African American youth was bold, and a subject not commonly painted at that time. He had an appreciation for the human form, very likely informed by his primary profession as a physician.

      Robert Helm Kennicott was born in Luverne, Minnesota, in 1892, and had probably settled in Los Angeles by the early 1930s.

      Kennicott was the private physician to such Hollywood luminaries as Ralph Bellamy and Jean Harlow.

      Robert Kennicott was a close friend of Los Angeles Modernist Mabel Alvarez, who greatly encouraged and influenced his painting.

      Alvarez was interested romantically in Kennicott; he was more interested, it would seem, in the male models that he painted.

      Kennicott’s work was exhibited at, among others, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art in 1934, the San Diego Art Guild in 1936-1941, and the Golden Gate International Exposition in 1939.

      Dr. Robert Kennicott passed away in Los Angeles in 1983.