IMPORTANT SILVER, OBJECTS OF VERTU AND RUSSIAN WORKS OF ART
21 October 2003
NIKOLAI KONSTANTINOVICH RERIKH [ROERICH] (1874-1947)
Ocean Series: Fairy Tale
USD 40,000 - USD 60,000
painted in 1922 on Monhegan Island, Maine
tempera on canvas
the reverse inscribed in pencil n. 183 and stamped 'Property of: Nicholas Roerich Paintings and Art Collections, Inc.'
Roerich Museum Catalogue, (New York, 1930), p. 17, n. 183
Roerich Museum, New York, 1930, n. 183
Situated ten miles off the coast of Maine, Monhegan Island is renowned for its primeval forests, jagged rock formations, and gritty beaches. Its sublime geography has attracted a community of artists since the 1850's. Remote from civilization and lacking its amenities, the Monhegan art colony drew only the hardiest of painters. The artists who gathered on Monhegan Island painted a diverse array of marine landscapes and quaint village scenes, as well as pictures of boats and docks, rocky crags and austere forests. The island attracted artists many of which lived and worked there, producing a rich and varied body of work of this small island. Such artists attracted by the island Nicholas Roerich, (who appears to have been the only Russian painter to have worked on the island).
"Nicholas Roerich was fascinated by America, especially Maine, where the rocky shoreline, steep mossy cliffs, and endless expanse of sea and sky reminded him of Finland and his native northern Russian landscape. He spent the summer of 1922 there, on Monhegan Island , and painted a large suite of works, the "Ocean" series. The powerful impact of the rugged Maine coast on him is felt in the spare, bold styles of these canvases." (Decter, J. Nicholas Roerich: The Life and Art of a Russian Master, London, 1989, p. 116)