The Artist's Process
Very rarely do we get a sense of how an artist worked and what inspired them. This auction we were lucky to learn a little about the process of one of our favorite artists, Reginald Marsh. Lot 126 in our sale features three drawings and two letters written by the artist describing his process.
The March 2, 1953 issue of Life magazine notes,
Marsh has spent more than 30 years gustily painting the sleazy side of life. His many portraits of fallen ladies, Bowery bums and bedraggled burlesque queens depicted with a unique blend of tough realism and sympathetic understanding, have found their way into the sedate halls of the most respectable American museums.
We are pleased to offer in lot 126 three drawings of NYC women and two letters detailing the artist's process. The letters have exciting detail about these three drawings but also about how Marsh chose his subjects in general. In them he writes...
The girls represented in the drawings are characteristic of New York "shop girls" if you will. What is striking in this city where terrain is flat and the streets all at right angles. The Pedestrians being vertical a kind of geometric presence against the horizontal and verticals that are always so manifest. Neither in other American cities nor in the 25 other countries I have visited at one time or other have I been so aware of this...
Marsh goes on to write about his materials and finalize the sale of these three drawings to a collector in South Africa.
Marsh was truly a New York City artist and his best subjects are the city's characters. We are happy to feature these unique works!