For your consideration, a watercolor landscape painting painting by the noted American painter Mary Reed (Kate Carew).
The watercolor is signed “Mary Reed” which was the name Kate Carew used later in life when she was married to her last of three husbands, John A. Reed. The painting is noteworthy for its high level of draftsmanship and expert paint handling. The painting’s palette displays subtle uses of blacks, grays, whites, and green, with much implied motion and animation in the work’s composition. The work’s subject is the gristmill St. Helena, located in Napa Valley, California. The painting measures 12 ½” x 10 5/8” , in period redwood burl frame 17” x 15” signed “M. Reed” “Aug. ‘39” with artist’s notations. The painting is in good vintage condition, with areas of staining to the painting’s left side (see photos). This fine painting is a very rare and collectable work by one of America’s most renowned artists.
Kate Carew (1869-1961) (Mary Williams, Mary Reed) Born in Oakland, CA on June 27, 1869, Kate Carew (a pseudonym) grew up in Placer County as Mary Williams. She studied at the San Francisco School of Design in the late 1880s and continued at the Chase School in NYC and Académie Colarossi in Paris. She went to work for Joseph Pultizer’s The New York World in 1890 where she contributed interviews of the rich and famous. A talented artist, she drew playful cartoons of her subjects to put them at ease and then signed these sketches “Kate Carew.” A list of the people whom she interviewed and caricatured reads like a Who’s Who of the Gilded Age: Mark Twain, Sarah Bernhardt, Lillian Gish, Jack London, William Butler Yeats; Pablo Picasso; Winston Churchill, Theodore Roosevelt, D. W. Griffith, J. P. Morgan, She made many trips back to California to visit and sketch with her close friend Mary DeNeale Morgan in Carmel, and was a pupil there of Wm M. Chase in 1914. During WWI she lived in Carmel and in 1920 returned to England. Married thrice, she was the wife of Seymour Davison, Harrie Chambers, and John A. Reed. After the latter's death in 1941, she returned to the Monterey Peninsula, bought the home of artist Lucy Valentine Pierce on Mesa Road, and remained there until her demise on Feb. 11, 1961.
Mary Reed Kate Carew Watercolor “The Grist Mill, St. Helena Calif.”, Circa 1939