"BLUE DAY" (MONHEGAN ISLAND)
oil on canvas, 24 x 40 inches,
signed and dated lower right "A. Winter '43"
Private Collection, New York, New York;
Private Collection, Connecticut.
Andrew Winter was a full-year resident on Maine’s Monhegan Island. He lived there from 1940 until his death in 1958, although he began visiting in the 1930s. Originally from Estonia, Winter had sailed around the world before coming to the United States and becoming a citizen. He spent his youth in Estonia working on the Baltic Sea from the time he was 20.
Winter came to New York City in the 1920s and enrolled at the School of the National Academy of Design. In New York, he met Jay Hall Connaway who encouraged him to visit Monhegan. In 2017 the Monhegan Museum of Art and History hosted an exhibition called “Reckoning with Nature: Andrew Winter at Monhegan Island.” The exhibition featured works painted by Winter of Monhegan in the off-season. Commenting on the exhibition museum director Edward L. Deci noted:
“If you go back through the years, the artists on Monhegan overwhelmingly have been people who were here for the summer. There’s just a small number who lived year-round,” Deci said. “It really was unusual, and the thing that goes along with that with respect to Andrew Winter, he was very much into the heavy, rough seas and the ice and snow. As people who knew him said, he was out in any weather. It didn’t matter what it was, he was out there painting, and an awful lot of his work is of winter scenes, with lots of ice and snow and very rough waters.”
The present lot is arguably one of Winter’s best paintings. The size and quality indicate the work was intended for exhibition. The original owners purchased the work in a New York City gallery and it has since descended in the family. This is the first time it has been shown publicly since the original purchase.