WILLIAM MCGREGOR PAXTON (1869-1941)
WILLIAM MCGREGOR PAXTON (1869-1941)
WILLIAM MCGREGOR PAXTON (1869-1941)
WILLIAM MCGREGOR PAXTON (1869-1941)
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Property from the Estate of Benjamin V. Lambert
WILLIAM MCGREGOR PAXTON (1869-1941)

The Living Room

Details
WILLIAM MCGREGOR PAXTON (1869-1941)
The Living Room
oil on canvas
32 x 26 in. (81.3 x 66 cm.)
Painted in 1941.
Provenance
The artist.
Estate of the above.
Vose Galleries, Boston, Massachusetts.
Sotheby's, New York, 24 May 1990, lot 182.
Acquired by the late owner from the above.
Literature
Boston Sunday Post, November 23, 1941.
E.W. Lee, William McGregor Paxton, 1869-1941, Indianapolis, Indiana, 1979, pp. 51, 148, no. 72, illustrated.
Exhibited
Boston, Massachusetts, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, William McGregor Paxton, N.A., Memorial Exhibition of Paintings, November-December 1941, no. 31.
Indianapolis, Indiana, Indianapolis Museum of Art; El Paso, Texas, El Paso Museum of Art; Omaha, Nebraska, Joslyn Museum of Art; Springfield, Massachusetts, Museum of Fine Arts, Springfield, William McGregor Paxton, August 16, 1978-May 6, 1979, pp. 52-53, 84-85, no. 72, illustrated.

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Caroline Seabolt
Caroline Seabolt Associate Specialist, Head of Sale

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Lot Essay

William McGregor Paxton's final painting, The Living Room represents the artist's finest interior subjects for which he is most celebrated. Ellen Wardwell Lee writes, "In the spring of 1941 he started a picture of the living room in his own house on Montvale Road and his wife agreed to sit for the figures. He thoroughly enjoyed the work...The start of the picture was extremely promising and he rightly felt that he had never worked with clearer eye or surer hand, a fact to which the uncompleted canvas still bears witness." (William McGregor Paxton, 1869-1941, Indianapolis, Indiana, 1979, p. 51) The artist passed before he was able to finish the painting, a concern which he held until the very end. Indeed, when he was advised by a doctor to rest, he said, "...then I won't finish my picture." (as quoted on p. 51)

Lee writes, "In its detached, unidealized presentation, The Living Room suggests the nameless figures and silent interiors of Edward Hopper. Hopper may have been a student of Ash Can School painter Robert Henri, but like Paxton, he made truth to visual impressions his ambition. Paxton would certainly have known his work, having served on the jury which awarded Hopper top honors at the Corcoran Biennial of 1937." (William McGregor Paxton, 1869-1941, p. 148)
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