19th Ave New York, NY 95822, USA

Emil Carlsen : The samovar, ca.1921.

Emil Carlsen The Samovar ca.1921
Emil Carlsen The Samovar ca.1921

 

ECA record control number: 1596

Archives of American Art #: 07130015

Record level: Item

Record type: Movable work

Work title: The samovar

Alternate work titles:
The samovar

Work date: ca.1921 [dated based on first exhibition.]

Work creator: Emil Carlsen [1848-1932]

Work medium: Oil on canvas
Work dimensions: 29-1/8 x 27-1/8 inches

Inscribed/signed front:
Location: At lower middle left.
Dated: No.
Text: ‘Emil. Carlsen.’.

Verso: unknown.

ECA category: Still-life
ECA sub-category: Orientalia

Archives of American Art Subjects:
Ethnic
Ethnic — Chinese
Still Life
Still Life — Other
Still Life — Other — Container
Still Life — Other — Cookware
Still Life — Other — Orientalia
Still Life — Other — Vase

Description of work:
An excellent example of Carlsen’s later Tonalist still lifes, the New Britain painting depicts a simple arrangement of a brass bowl, a samovar, and a white earthenware vase-objects that please the eye with their simple but classic shapes. Round and oblong forms play against one another, the vase echoing the form of the samovar, the samovar mimicking the roundness of the kettle. As in the best of Carlsen’s works, the tonal values are very close. The luminous brass vessels are the focus–their glowing surface reflections are complemented by the matte white earthenware pot in the foreground; their darker silvery gray tones are repeated in the rich monochromatic background. Carlsen’s painting is detailed, though not laboriously so. Instead the edges and reflections are slightly blurred, so that the painting is bathed in a soft luminosity and tranquility. [MAS, New Britain Museum]

Provenance/ownership:
1924 ( New Britain Museum of American Art [1853- ], 56 Lexington Street, New Britain, CT 06052, John Butler Talcott Fund (accession #1924.1) ) ;
ca.1921 Emil Carlsen [1848-1932], the artist .

Exhibition history:
1999 Vance Jordan Fine Art, New York, NY, “Quiet Magic: The Still-Life Paintings of Emil Carlsen“, October 28 – December 10.
1981 New Britain Museum of American Art, New Britain, CT, “Three Centuries of Connecticut Art, New Britain Museum of American Art”, May 3 – 31.
1963 New Britain Museum of American Art, New Britain, CT, “Oil Paintings, Water Colors, Lithographs, Etchings”.
1935 The Macbeth Gallery, New York, NY, “Still Lifes by Emil Carlsen, 1853-1932“, April 23 – May 13.
1922 The Dallas Art Association, Dallas, TX, “Third Annual Exhibition: American Art From The Days Of The Colonists To Now“, November 16–30.

References/citations:
– New Britain Musuem of American Art website [[http://ink.nbmaa.org]] accessed August 9, 2016.
– The Wall Street Journal, New York, NY, “In Connecticut, Discovering American Art’s First Home” by Willard Spiegelman, August 8, 2016.
– Vance Jordan Fine Art, New York, NY, Exhibition Catalog, “Quiet Magic: The Still-Life Paintings of Emil Carlsen“, October 28 – December 10, 1999, #39.
– New Britain Museum of American Art, “Highlights of the collection: volume I,” New Britain, CT: The Museum, 1999. Illustration: New Britain Museum of American Art, “Highlights of the collection: volume I,” New Britain, CT: The Museum, 1999, pg. 47.
– New Britain Museum of American Art, New Britain, CT, Exhibition Catalog, “Three Centuries of Connecticut Art, New Britain Museum of American Art”, May 3 – 31, 1981, #58, page 28.
– New Britain Museum of American Art, “Catalogue of the collection,” New Britain, CT: The Museum, 1975.
– New Britain Museum of American Art, New Britain, CT, Exhibition Catalog, “Oil Paintings, Water Colors, Lithographs, Etchings”, 1963.
– The Macbeth Gallery, New York, NY, Exhibition Catalog, “Still Lifes by Emil Carlsen, 1853-1932“, April 23 – May 13, 1935, #5, not illustrated.
– The Dallas Art Association, Dallas, TX, Exhibition Catalog, “Third Annual Exhibition: American Art From The Days Of The Colonists To Now“, November 16–30, 1922, #95, not illustrated.

Related works:

ECA notes:

– New Britain Musuem of American Art website [[http://ink.nbmaa.org]] accessed August 9, 2016.
…”An excellent example of Carlsen’s later Tonalist still lifes, the New Britain painting depicts a simple arrangement of a brass bowl, a samovar, and a white earthenware vase-objects that please the eye with their simple but classic shapes. Round and oblong forms play against one another, the vase echoing the form of the samovar, the samovar mimicking the roundness of the kettle. As in the best of Carlsen’s works, the tonal values are very close. The luminous brass vessels are the focus–their glowing surface reflections are complemented by the matte white earthenware pot in the foreground; their darker silvery gray tones are repeated in the rich monochromatic background. Carlsen’s painting is detailed, though not laboriously so. Instead the edges and reflections are slightly blurred, so that the painting is bathed in a soft luminosity and tranquility.

Carlsen’s predominant philosophy was one of classic balance and simplicity: “Still life painting must be of a well understood simplicity, solid, strong, vital, unnecessary details neglected, salient points embellished, made the most of, every touch full of meaning and for the love of beauty.”(1) The objects themselves may be totally lacking in traditional beauty, but the painting is made beautiful by Carlsen’s sensitivity to their arrangement. As the artist told his students: “The arrangement well spaced, the objects good in color and form, the background simple and neutral, the key chosen, and half of the work is done.”(2)

MAS”…

Price history:

 

Document information

Document permalink:
http://emilcarlsen.org/work/?p=1596

Digital-born document number:
ECA.2014.1596

Digital document provenance:
Original compiled and researched document by the Emil Carlsen Archives, 266 West 21st Street, Suite 4E, New York, NY 10011.

Document license:
Creative Commons Corporation shareAlike (sa) license. Some of the information contained within this document may hold further publication restrictions depending on final use. It is the responsibility of the researcher to determine.

Image license:
The author of this artwork died more than 70 years ago. According to U.S. Copyright Law, copyright expires 70 years after the author’s death. In other countries, legislation may differ.

Record birth date:
August 9, 2014

Last updated: September 1, 2017 at 13:15 pm