Saturday, January 6, 2018

James William Pattison (1844 - 1915)

My Grand-Uncle was Ralph Kline who lived to be 100 years old. He was an incredibly kind man - fought in WWII, and lived in Minneapolis with his wife, Dorothy (who now lives in Rochester, MN at a feisty 98!) One of Ralph's grand-uncles was an artist named James William Pattison. He led quite a fascinating life, and there's a great write-up about him here, if you'd like to read it.

Here's a portrait of him:

Portrait of James William Pattison done by Louis Betts in 1906, oil on canvas
47" x 33" from the collection of the Union League
Club in Chicago
Anyway, we've had this painting done by him that's been in the family for many, many years, and now it's been passed to me. Although the painting isn't titled, I found some other paintings of his online at various museums and auction houses, and some of them feature his daughter, Penelope, whom I believe is also the subject of our painting. So for now, I'm calling it:

Penelope in a Field with Sheep

The image is approximately 19" x 24", and the glass in front of it got cracked, but the painting itself appears not to have suffered. I had a hard time getting any good shots of it due to reflection, etc - plus I used my iPhone to take the pictures, which don't do it justice. I believe the medium Pattison used here is gouache, the definition of which is: "a method of painting using opaque pigments ground in water and thickened with a gluelike substance."

The next few shots are close-ups I took.


Snuggling lambs:

Sleepy sheep:

Here's the back of the frame. I'd like to take the back off, perhaps, to see if anything is written on the back of the painting itself, but don't know if I should.

Anyhow, it was fun learning of this grand-uncle of a grand-uncle who was a semi-famous painter and art reviewer! He even exhibited in the Chicago World Fair - which the excellent book Devil in the White City is about. (Not about Pattison, of course, know what I mean!)

Thanks for stopping by!

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