For those seeking an early California painting featuring the Golden Gate, consider this circa 1900 (possibly as early as 1880's?) unsigned work on gray artist's board, 18" by 24" (22 1/2" by 28" as framed), the subject the Golden Gate looking north from approximately the Land's End area, Civil War-era Fort Point in the middle distance, and Mt. Tamalpais in the far distance in Marin County, a steam powered boat and a three masted ship in the channel. The world famous Golden Gate Bridge now spans this gap of course, making this view of historic interest. Many artists, including Albert Bierstadt, Charles Dormon Robinson, John Ross Key, and countless others, have painted this view. I thought it might be by the hand of William Coulter, well-known San Francisco Bay Area painter, but have since discarded that theory. This might have been executed by a listed artist, but the lack of a signature thwarts the research efforts. There is a fine subtlety to the light, lending an atmospheric and luminous impression. The painting stands on its own as an historical work that should find a new home in the San Francisco area or with an expatriate San Franciscan or a visitor who is fond of the famously scenic city. Early views of the "Gate" of this quality, signed or not, are scarce and desirable. The gold frame likely dates to the period. It has a few losses and imperfections but is perfectly serviceable as-is.
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