Rolph Scarlett (1889-1984)
On occasion, Christie's has a direct financial int… Read more An American Place: The Barney A. Ebsworth Collection
Rolph Scarlett (1889-1984)


Rolph Scarlett (1889-1984)
signed with initials 'R.S' (on the reverse)--signed again 'Rolph Scarlett' (on the stretcher)
oil on canvas
37 x 40 in. (93.9 x 101.6 cm.)
Painted circa 1940-45.
The artist.
Private collection, Woodstock, New York.
Washburn Gallery, New York.
Acquired by the late owner from the above, 1983.
G. John, "When Paradox is King," The Christian Science Monitor, December 30, 1992, p. 16, illustrated.
R. Larson, College Algebra: Concepts and Models, Lexington, Massachusetts, 1996, cover illustration.
New York, Washburn Gallery, Rolph Scarlett: Drawings and Watercolors, April 26-May 14, 1983, no. 45.
St. Louis, Missouri, St. Louis Art Museum; Honolulu, Hawaii, Honolulu Academy of Arts; Boston, Massachusetts, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, The Ebsworth Collection: American Modernism, 1911-1947, November 20, 1987-June 5, 1988, pp. 158-159, 215, no. 57, illustrated.
Special notice
On occasion, Christie's has a direct financial interest in the outcome of the sale of certain lots consigned for sale. This will usually be where it has guaranteed to the Seller that whatever the outcome of the auction, the Seller will receive a minimum sale price for the work. This is known as a minimum price guarantee. This is such a lot.

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Sara Friedlander
Sara Friedlander

Lot Essay

We would like to thank Judith Nasby, Curator Emerita and Professor at the University of Guelph in Canada for her research on this lot.

From 1938 to 1949 Canadian-born Rolph Scarlett was a close associate of Hilla Rebay, founder of New York’s Museum of Non-Objective Painting, and her colleague, painter Rudolf Bauer. Rebay awarded Scarlett a Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship in 1938 and eventually purchased sixty Scarlett works for the museum's collection. The present work reveals Scarlett’s typical use of geometric layering, emphasis on circles, intuitive coloration and mottled or flat backgrounds dating to his 1940-45 period.

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