Lot 203: Douglas Volk (1856-1935) American artist
January 25, 2017
Wells, ME, USA
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Description: Douglas Volk (1856-1935) American artist. Douglas Volk____s path as an artist was secured early in his life, following instruction in Italy and in Paris with renowned painter and teacher Jean-Leon Ger____me. He held prominent teaching positions at the Cooper Institute, New York; the Art Students League, New York; as the founder of the Minneapolis School of Fine Arts; at Cooper Union, New York and at the National Academy of Design, New York. It was during a break from teaching from 1898 to 1906 that Volk and his wife, Marion Larrabee Volk, purchased Hewn Oaks, a large property on the shores of Kezar Lake in Lovell, Maine that became their beloved summer retreat. Marion Volk described Hewn Oaks to a journalist: "It is this out-of-door life we enjoy most and so you will find the whole place uncitified. It is just as close to nature as we can make it, to live comfortably, and when we built our house we decided that should be in keeping with this idea." The Volks founded the Sabatos Handicraft Society in Lovell, an arts and crafts movement that engaged Marion Volk, their children, friends and neighbors. Douglas Volk focused on easel painting during this period, taking inspiration from the surrounding woods and Lake Kezar. Douglas Volk____s work is represented in numerous public collections including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, DC and the Brooklyn Museum of Art, New York. Some of Volk____s most important portraits of world leaders were done from life, Lloyd George, King Albert of Belgium and General John Pershing. He painted at least nine posthumous portraits of Abraham Lincoln, basing them on the plaster life-mask that his father had made in 1860. One of them hangs in the Lincoln Bedroom at The White House. Another appeared on a U.S. postage stamp issued in the 1950s, and is now at the National Gallery of Art. Offered here is a 3 page ALS, dated 1911. Written from NYC to his wife Marion in Maine. He mentions finishing a picture; taking it to show someone; thinks it may be a "taker"; mentions Mrs. Lyons. Dr. James Lyons is someone who appears in connection with Volk circa 1910 as some of Volk's art work is dedicated to Lyons. Envelope is included. Approx. 8 x 10. VG.
Condition Report: VG