Nearly 100 years old and in excellent condition, this is a stunning watercolor - possibly also in gouache - from largely unheralded artist Virginia Remsen Van Voast. Measuring 12.5" x 8.5" sight and 19" x 14.75" framed in wooden bamboo style, double matted and behind glass. Skinner Auction (MA) provided an informal estimate of $300-$500.
The beautiful blue-and-gold macaw hails from South America and presents a bold mix of bright blue and yellow feathers. Among its most striking features are the white patches of skin around its eyes, typical of most macaw species. Its green forehead offers beautiful contrast to its blue and yellow body. These are intelligent, social birds.
Virginia Remsen Van Voast (b. 1871 - d. 1947) was active/lived in Ohio, South Carolina. The Cincinnati, Ohio, artist came from an old Virginia family and was descended from the founder of Newport, Kentucky, Colonel James Taylor (a cousin of former President Zachary Taylor). A 1921 “In Society” article in The Cincinnati Enquirer described her as being from “a family so long identified with the highest culture and the most interesting social life of Cincinnati.” Her father, James, was in the U.S. Army, and she was born in Columbia, South Carolina, where he was stationed during Reconstruction.
Miss Van Voast was a painter, etcher and craftsperson. She appeared as early as 1903 in the American Art Annual but seems to have been most active in the 1930s, with exhibitions in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and Cincinnati.
She studied at the Cincinnati Art Academy. Among her teachers were Henry Sharp, E. T. Hurley, George Pearse Ennis and Anthony Thieme. She was a member of the Cincinnati Woman's Arts Club and the Cincinnati Professional Artists.
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