Tag Archives: Anna Katherine Skeele

Peter’s Auction Picks of the Day: May 21st

As our interest in Fine Art broadens, it is necessary for us to include a wider variety of images.  In our previous auctions I have included brightly colored mostly abstract or geometric works.  But there is a dark brooding side to modernism that deals with conflict or impending conflict.  Also, modern and contemporary artists have a long history of addressing the age old subject of eroticism.

The most obvious images in this auction that deal with impending death or doom are the Richard Bosman falling Mountaineer (Lot 276), Anna Katherine Skeele War Dance (Lot 298), and Larry Clark’s haunting images from his Tulsa series (Lots 146 and 147).

Lot 276 Richard Bosman, Mountaineer, 1986, Oil on canvas, Estimate $5,000 - 7,000

Lot 298 Anna Katherine Skeele, War Dance, circa 1945, Oil on canvas with artist's frame, Estimate $3,000 - 5,000

Lot 146 Larry Clark, Untitled (From Tulsa), 1971, Estimate $2,000 - 3,000

Lot 147 Larry Clark, Untitled (From Tulsa), 1971, Estimate $2,000 - 3,000

However, Warhol’s Electric Chairs series (Lot 360) and Richard Avedon’s image of Warhol’s scars from his gun-shot wounds (Lot 144) are equally suggestive of the certainty of death.  It is ironic that Warhol is able to make an image of the electric chair beautiful and bright, almost inviting.

Lot 360 Andy Warhol, Electric Chairs (suite of 10), 1971, Screenprints in colors, Estimate $150,000 - 200,000

Lot 144 Richard Avedon, Warhol, 1971, Estimate $3,000 - 5,000

One of my personal favorite pieces in this auction is John Baldessari’s “Jacob’s Ladder: Love (Yellow, Red Blue, and Black and White); War (Orange, Violet, Green and Black and White)”, Lot 143, with the front and the back images revealing the opposing human emotions of anger and affection.

Lot 143 John Baldessari, Jacob's Ladder, 2004, Estimate $6,000 - 7,000

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Early California Modern: Anna Katharine Skeele

Born in Wellington, Ohio, Anna Skeele first started her art studies while at Olivet College in Michigan. After moving to Southern California in 1912, she settled in Monrovia and continued at Pomona College. Furthering her art studies in the 1920s, Skeele worked with Armin Hansen in Monterey, Art Students League of New York City under Hawthorn and Bridgman, Académie de la Grande Chaumière and André Lhote in Paris, and Royal Academy of Arts in Florence.  In 1951 Skeele and her husband Frode Dann established the Pasadena School of Fine Art.

Anna Katharine Skeele, War Dance, circa 1945, Oil on canvas with artist's frame, Estimate $3,000 - 5,000

Very few works by Skeele have shown up on the market; however because of the quality of her work there has always been a lot of competition. This example has the artist’s original frame and retains an exhibition label from the Los Angeles County Museum of Art from 1945!

Literature: Huges, Edan Milton. Artist in California, 1786-1940. Sacramento: Sacramento’s Crocker Art Museum