American & 20th-21st Century International Art

October 05, 2017

LOT 54

Lot 54

Robert Hale Ives Gammell (1893-1981)

Robert Hale Ives Gammell (1893-1981)
Lot 54 Details
Robert Hale Ives Gammell (1893-1981), American


Oil with pencil sketching lines on paper, with dimension annotations in pencil left and right margins, inscribed: “Warburg Institute Journal Vol 7” to the margin in pencil along the bottom edge lower right
Image/Sheet 11.8" x 7.9ins — 30 x 20 cms; 23.2" x 15.9ins — 59 x 40.5 cms

Estimate $500-$700

Realised: $660
Price Includes Buyer's Premium ?

Lot Report

Additional Images
Robert Hale Ives Gammell (1893-1981)
  • Robert Hale Ives Gammell (1893-1981)
  • Robert Hale Ives Gammell (1893-1981)
  • Robert Hale Ives Gammell (1893-1981)
  • Robert Hale Ives Gammell (1893-1981)
  • Robert Hale Ives Gammell (1893-1981)

With Gregg Frame Studio, Columbus, Ohio stamp to backing;
Ex. Coll. Richard Cohen, Toronto & the US, an artist that knew and worked with Gammell;
By descent to his wife, Burlington, Ontario;


Inscribed: Warburg Institute Journal, Vol. 7;
R. H. Ives Gammell Studios Trust; 2001; Boston MA. p. 108


The consignor’s deceased husband, Richard Cohen, was an illustrator who studied in Gammell’s studio. Mr. Cohen worked in movie special effects, winning two Oscars.

According to Elizabeth Ives Hunter, the artist’s god-daughter, art historian and author of Gammell’s biography, this work is a study for Gammell’s finished painting, “Era’s End.” Her father, Theodore Valsam of Walpole, Mass. was Gammell’s assistant from 1928-1979. Theodore drew the grid lines in this study and he also did the first “lay-in” for the larger finished work executed later in 1967.

Ms. Hunter also quotes from Gerald M. Ackerman's essay, The Heroic Accomplishments of R. H. Ives Gammell and the Future of American Figurative Painting which is in the book “Transcending Vision - R. H. Ives Gammell 1893-1981” citing the following:

To see how consistently he (Gammell) hung upon this mixture of personal and universal fate, of seeing the macrocosm reflected in the microcosm, one need look only at ... an allegory, Era’s End of 1967 ... which is still concerned with the loss of traditional values, and with his personal place in a crumbling civilization (certainly the young boy is Gammell).

Ives was concerned with this theme for many years and his diaries suggest that he began to personalize it in the very early 1950s after the publication of his book, The Twilight of Painting.  It was not unusual for him to start with a pictorial concept, put it aside for a few years, and then get back to it.

We are grateful to Ms. Hunter for providing this further catalogue information.


For condition information please contact the specialist.

LOT 54

About Condition Ratings

  • 5 Stars: Excellent - No discernable damage, flaws or imperfections
  • 4 Stars: Very Good - Minor flaws or imperfections visible only under close inspection using specialised instruments or black light
  • 3 Stars: Good - Minor flaws visible upon inspection under standard lighting
  • 2 Stars: Fair - Exhibits flaws or damage that may draw the eye under standard lighting
  • 1 Star: Poor - Flaws or damage immediately apparent under standard lighting (examples: missing components, rips, broken glass, damaged surfaces, etc.)

Note: Condition ratings and condition details are the subjective opinions of our specialists and should be used as a guide only. Waddington’s uses due care when preparing condition details, however, our staff are not professional restorers or conservators. Condition details and reports are not warranties and each lot is sold “as is” in accordance with the buyer’s terms and conditions of sale. In all cases the prospective purchaser is responsible for inspecting the property themselves prior to placing a bid.