CHARLES COURTNEY CURRAN
Charles Courtney Curran was born in Kentucky and raised in Ohio. He first studied at the Cincinnati School of Design before moving to New York City in 1882. In New York City he attended the National Academy of Design (NAD) and the Art Student’s League. He exhibited his first painting at the NAD in 1883 at 23 years old. From 1888-1891 Curran studied at the Academie Julian in Paris. While abroad, he successfully exhibited works at the Paris Salon and at Durand-Ruel Gallery.
In 1891, Curran returned to the States where he continued to enjoy success exhibiting at the World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago, the NAD, Exposition Universelle in Paris, the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo, the Louisiana Purchase exhibition and many others. He was elected a full Academician in 1904.
Curran was a doting father who frequently painted his children as subjects. Among his favorite subjects was his daughter Emily, born in 1903. Jane Faquin Ward writes “…the artist painted her outdoors, eating breakfast, going to sleep at night, and playing with her toys.” The last description refers to he present canvas, Maternal Cares, the location unknown at the time of Ward’s publication. Some of the dolls may be the same as those in The Concert a painting of Emily playing the piano to an audience of dolls and stuffed animals (Coll. of Mr. and Mrs. Henry Schwob).
Maternal Cares was a popular painting by Curran at the time it was painted. Gardner Teall illustrated it in a gloating review of Curran in a 1916 issue of Hearst’s; “…it is the sort of art which comes before one like a sudden vision of natural blessedness, unruffled by storms of experience. It may be a little miss playing with her dolls…and you will find them all undisturbed by the suggestion of earthliness, worldliness, or soddenness. We should be grateful to any painter who so sincerely brings to every one of us the vision of youth’s gloriousness.”
Shannon’s is pleased to present Maternal Cares, the first of a collection of 7 lots by Charles Courtney Curran in this auction.