Jackson Pollock (1912-1956)
Jackson Pollock (1912-1956)

Camp with Oil Rig

Jackson Pollock (1912-1956)
Camp with Oil Rig
oil on board
18 x 25¼ in. (45.7 x 64.1 cm.)
Painted circa 1930-1933.
Mrs. Sanford McCoy, Deep River, Connecticut, acquired from the artist
Her sale; Christie's, New York, 5 May 1985, lot 8
Acquired at the above sale by the present owner
F.V. O'Connor and E.V. Thaw, Jackson Pollock: A Catalogue Raisonné of Paintings, Drawings and Other Works, New Haven and London, 1978, vol. 1, p. 4, no. 4 (illustrated).
E. Frank, Jackson Pollock, New York, 1983, p. 14, no. 6 (illustrated in color).
East Hampton, Guild Hall Museum and New York, Grey Art Gallery and Study Center, New York University, Krasner/Pollock--A Working Relationship, August-December 1981, no. 5 (illustrated).
Kunstmuseum Bern, Lee Krasner--Jackson Pollock, November 1989-February 1990, p. 37, no. 10 (illustrated in color).
Palm Springs Desert Museum; Boise Art Museum; Tuscon Museum of Art and Corning, Rockwell Museum, Transforming the Western Image in 20th Century American Art, February 1992-December 1992, p. 49, no. 46 (illustrated).
Sale room notice
Please note that the property title for this work should read: Property from an Important American Private Collection.

Lot Essay

"Jackson Pollock (1912-1956) is known for his mature drip paintings that introduced a radically new conception of pictorial space and of the artist's physical involvement with his work. Born in Cody, Wyoming to a poor migrant family, he was raised in a number of different locations in the West, mainly in Arizona and California. Camp with Oil Rig of 1930-33, an early work, was done while Pollock was studying at the Art Students League in New York under Thomas Hart Benton, America's best known regionalist painter. Benton had Pollock in his classes from 1931-1932 and the two remained friends until Pollock's tragic death. He said that the young man's achievement in these early works was to 'have injected a mystic strain into the more generally prosaic characteristics of regionalism.'

Camp with Oil Rigs breaks with a matter-of-fact representation through its air of mystery. The scene is murky, stark and desolate. The somber, greenish cast contributes to a mood of desperation and alienation...The West had lost its aura as a land of riches and opportunity. Pollock's rebelliousness and psychological confusion can be traced to a lack of feeling of centeredness. He no longer knew his place: the emptiness of the land did nothing to provide deep spiritual meaning."

(Transforming the Western Image in 20th Century Art, exh. cat., Palm Springs Desert Museum, 1992, p. 49)

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