A very beautiful, elegant landscape painting of a somber, late autumn day in the Northeast, probably Connecticut, 14" by 26" (19 1/2" by 31 1/2" framed), signed at lower left by the quite well regarded American artist WILLIAM MERRITT POST (1856-1935). The scene is of a small brook running in a boggy meadow area, scattered trees either bare of their leaves or about to lose them in the growing autumn chill. Colors used are somber and respectful of the season portrayed. Post was strongly influenced by and was actually a friend of the artist Hugh Bolton-Jones; the resemblance between many of their works is clear to see. Post studied at the Art Students League with James Carroll Beckwith. He spent much time painting in New Jersey and Connecticut, and after 1912 settled in the West Morris, Connecticut area near the Litchfield hills art colony, often painting the nearby Bantam River. The artist was a member of and exhibited with numerous art groups in the Northeast, including the New York Watercolor Club, Salmagundi Club, Connecticut Academy of Fine Arts, Philadelphia Art Society, New York Society of Painters, and the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. Today he is known for his Tonalist and Barbizon landscapes, usually set in the autumn season. Works have appeared often at fine auctions in the New England states, larger examples climbing to the upper four figures. This work, fresh from a Los Angeles estate, has been relined in recent decades. It sports a mostly dull, matte surface, with inconsistent or little varnish and a pattern of spider crack craquelure principally in the sky. There is a small area of paint loss about 1 1/4" in the center sky, as shown. This can be easily repaired. The frame, possibly the original one, is in good condition with only light wear. Overall a classic painting of the American Northeast. dg
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