Frank Tenney Johnson NA

1874-1939 Los Angeles, CA

"Cowboy Race," field study for "Dust Stained Riders"

Oil on canvas backed with masonite
Unsigned, titled on the stretcher
25" H x 30" W

  • Literature: H. McCracken, "The Frank Tenney Johnson Book: A Master Painter of the Old West," Doubleday and Co., New York, NY, 1974, p. 171, no. 719, as oil study for 'Dust Stained Riders'.
  • Notes: A label affixed to the stretcher states, 'This picture I authenticate as having been painted by F. Tenney Johnson, N.A.' signed by W.P. Krehm and Frank Panter. William P. Krehm worked as a framer for the Biltmore Art Salon in the Ambassador Hotel, Los Angeles, of which Johnson was a founding member, in the 1930's. He continued his friendship with Mrs. Johnson after Johnson died in 1939 and in the 1940's he helped her clean out the artist's studio and repair and restore the paintings and their frames. In partial payment for services, Mrs. Johnson gave Krehm 72 field sketches by the artist including the present work. Copies of a letter from Krehm describing his relationship with the Johnsons dated April 26, 1963 and another statement dated April 23, 1968 signed by Frank Panter accompany the lot. In addition, a copy of a letter dated August 12, 1963 from the artist James Swinnerton to William Riffle, one of the purchasers of the sketches from Krehm, accompanies the lot. Swinnerton writes: I am sincerely pleased to find that you have become the owner of these original field sketches of Frank Tenney Johnson's. Frank and myself used to agree that the field sketches had the quality of 'feeling' of the subject that was somewhat missing in the following finished painting which followed it or them -- I knew of these sketches of his that 'Vinnie' (Frank's wife) had turned over to Bill Krehm and wondered what he was going to do with them and now, I find you have obtained them -- They should be shown especially now in the way art is gathering interest of so many persons. Again - I congratulate you on unveiling them. Sincerely your friend, Jim Swinnerton.
    A numbered copy (#3649) of the leather-bound edition of "The Frank Tenney Johnson Book" will accompany this lot.
  • Condition: Visual: Generally good condition. Craquelure scattered throughout. Paint shrinkage scattered throughout the lower portion of the painting. Very minor surface dirt and grime.
    Blacklight: Spots of touch-up scattered throughout, the largest a 1.5" x 2" scattered area left center.
    Frame: 33" H x 39" W x 2.5" D

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May 17, 2020 2:00 PM PDT
Monrovia, CA, US

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