Monday, October 13, 2008

Artist Ellen Oakford

I posted yesterday about a piece of artwork that I had purchased at the thrift store last week. I had mentioned how I love prints with trees in it. The one I found at the thrift store cost me $6.88 and I saw it as I was walking out the door. I loved the look of it, reminiscent of a drive to a southern plantation or of a tree lined street in some quaint southern town like St Augustine or Savannah. Here is my print:

Well I received this kind email from MMK, who was a little familiar with the artist.
MMK did a little investigating for me about my print:"

This is the comment that I received from MMK
"Hi! The artist name on your print looked familiar, so I looked it up and found this link:
and also this link (she's at the bottom)
Neat artist! I like this black and white scenery, so this always catches my attention! I visited your blog from a friend's link and enjoyed reading it! Would love to know what you find out about your print! Marla"

Marla, I couldn't be happier! I am so appreciative of you to forward that information onto me! I just love my art piece...and even more now that I know a little history on it. It is a bonus that is is actually worth something. I cannot thank you enough for you pointing out to me the history of the artist and some other artwork that she has done. My piece seems to be in very good condition. And the piece is signed.
I do not know for certain that it is an original, but it certainly appears to me because the tool used to create the artwork appears to be in pen.

(back of print)

Here is what Marla dug up on the artist Ellen Oakford:
Ellen Oakford (active 1880-1890s)

TWILIGHT, ca. 1887. Pencil signed, on Japan paper. Exhibited at the N. Y. Etching Club, 1888. See: Peet, American Women of the Etching Revival, High Museum, Atlanta, 1988. The many talented women etchers of the 1880s are being rediscovered and with this evocative image Oakford clearly deserves to be in that group.
Etching, 6 5/8" x 10 3/4".

Item Number: 36756
Title: Yale Campus
Artist: Ellen Oakford
Category: 20th Century Prints > Colleges and Universities
Medium Used: Etching,
Year: 1888.
Edition: Edition unknown.
Size: Image size 9 11/16 x 14 15/16" (246 x 379 mm).
Condition: Very good condition.
Price: $650.00
Additional Info: Unsigned with printed remarque of fence surrounding the green.
Once again, Marla/MMK I am so appreciative of your research. For once, my thrifting has really paid off! You have truly made my day! Sincere thanks!


Bama Belle said...

Oh, Leigh that is so cool!!!!
Are you just too excited? What a neat find.

Tammy said...

Looks like you got yourself one good deal there! And such a pretty drawing.

MMK said...

Hi Leigh! Isn't it exciting when you find a great deal? I have a print I found at a sale long ago that seems like an original print and is marked "Klee" and I thought it might be a Paul Klee, but have never been able to authenticate it! If your art is an original pen, it might be worth more than a print. An artist usually works in some sort of print medium, then makes a lot of prints from them. Back in Oakford's time, they would have likely been hand "pulled" or printed. The artist then picked the best prints and numbered them in order. 1st out of 10 or say 20th out of 500. (You would see 1/10 or 20/500 somewhere on the art). If the artist is popular or well known, then a print with fewer copies would be worth more and ones near the first picked worth more. If your piece is a drawing, then it might not have a set of prints and be a "one of a kind"! Exciting! I am not sure when artists started having prints made from their drawings, but I think it was some time after Oakford's time. I am not an art historian, but I used to work at college for an art department and ran a "slide" library that had about 100,000 slides of art work from the earliest artists up to the present. That is probably why I recognized the name. We had a couple of professors that always pointed out women artists - they were not as common back then - women were left home to learn to sew and cook, maybe learn French, maybe sing or play an instrument, and painting was more of a decorative sort (crafts). I studied art in college and loved to draw. I'm busy with kids now, but hope to get back to creating in a few years when they are grown. My late husband was an artist, professor and was always collecting pieces. Well, got to go! Hope you find out you have an original one of a kind piece, but even if it isn't it's very, very nice! I would enjoy it for it's beauty and interesting perspective! Marla

Kirby3131 said...

This is great & so wonderful that a faithful reader helped you out.

I want to go thrifting with you! lol

Have a fabulous day!

Leigh said...

Bama Belle & Tammy- I am just so happy!

MMK- You have been so kind, I am most appreciative of pointing it out to me, as well as all of the additional information you have given. It really is exciting. And it really is a beautiful print, even if it were just worth the 6 bucks I paid for it. Its a bonus that it's probably worth more.
The artwork is not numbered. I hope one day I can get it appraised.

Kristin-Thank you. And indeed so sweet that she was forthcoming in her knowledge of art. Come on! I'd love to go thrifting with you!

Sandi @the WhistleStop Cafe said...

No Way!
You lucky you.

Kathy Smith said...

I have the same exact picture. I used to sell Transart via "home parties" back in the 1980's. (think Home Interiors, Tupperware, etc)You chose the print and then coordinated the frame and matting to your liking. This is where I purchased mine. So yours isn't one of a kind. I'm sorry but I don't remember much else about the picture. I love mine too!