Joe Duncan Gleason (1881-1959 Glendale, CA)

oil on board
8'' H x 10'' W

  • Provenance: The Giddings Family, Avalon, CA, a gift from the artist; Mrs. Jennie L.H. Giddings; by descent to June Giddings, 31 March 1947 (see verso frame inscription); by descent in the family to the present owner, Jane ''Jae'' Giddings Carmichael
  • Notes: This painting depicts two important historical landmarks in Avalon: Peter Gano's house, ''Look Out Cot'', which was purchased in 1921 by the Giddings Family and renamed ''Holly Hill House'' after the sprawling holly shrubs indigenous to the hillside around it, and, prominently seen across the harbor, Sugarloaf Casino, built by William Wrigley Jr. in 1920. Peter Gano was a city civil engineer who helped design Avalon's first fresh water system for George Shatto. Gano purchased the property from Shatto for $500, whereupon he built his dream house with the help of his blind horse, Mercury. Likely painted in the early 1920's, the present work?s depiction of two prominent landmarks in Avalon offers a rare historical record of the these two structures, even showing Gano?s famous grapevines spilling out of the verandas. Gleason was commissioned by the Giddings Family to paint other versions of this subject as gifts for family members but this was the first and original gift from Gleason to the family depicting this scene. The artist affixed a poem to the board backing paper written by Mrs. Jennie L.H. Giddings, titled ''Beautiful Bay of Avalon''. According to the Giddings family, Gleason loved this poem and it's likely that it served as his inspiration to paint this harbor view. ''The Beautiful Bay of Avalon'' hung in the Holly Hill House for the entire duration of the Giddings family's ownership
  • Condition: Visual: Generally good condition. Very minor frame abrasion along the upper edge. The board very slightly bowed. Blacklight: No evidence of touch-up under blacklight. A few tiny spots fluoresce on the porch, to the left of the house, in the lower left corner and a tiny spot on the hillside, but these appear to be in the hand of the artist.

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March 25, 2014 6:30 PM PDT
Pasadena, CA, US

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