This month’s illustration is from The Arabian Nights book by Kate Douglas Wiggin and Nora A. Smith, editors, which Parrish created for the Charles Scribner’s & Sons 1909 publication. The joyful zest of the pirates on their boat hearkens back to memories of summer days of youth, sailing near the shore, with the sky within reach of our dreams and the sun lighting our days, impervious to sunstroke or fear of lurking viruses…
Besides the displays of Maxfield Parrish paintings, my gallery was also famous for the other prestigious artists it handled, which included being the first gallery in California to be allowed the prestige of showing the works of American Artist Andrew Wyeth (1917-2009).
A quick walk down memory lane here:
During the nineteen-seventies, the Brandywine Museum in Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania sent me a letter requesting me to help set up a prestigious show of Maxfield Parrish original paintings in their museum for the coming Bicentennial Exhibition. I loaned them nine works, including a small mural by Parrish and was then invited to participate in their celebration of donors and lenders to the exhibit on Opening Night. I was delighted to be invited and made the trip. While there, I was introduced by James Duff, who at the time was the head of the Museum, to a delightful gentleman sporting a white dress jacket who seemed to be about my height and appeared to be quite shy. Mr.Duff introduced me to him saying only : “Alma, this is Andy who also loaned several of his Parrish originals to the exhibit.” ….and then: “Andy, Alma loaned us several Parrishes also!”
Mr. Duff only used our first names in the introduction. After polite chit chat and exchanging information of some of the paintings we had loaned, we drifted apart. To my horror, it was later when the speakers were called to the dais to say a few words, that “Andy” was introduced to the attendees as Andrew Wyeth!!! The living major artist in America at that time!!!
After dinner, I approached him and said as softly as I could manage, “Mr. Wyeth, when we were introduced, I didn’t know I was speaking to YOU!” He looked at me and smiled, “Don’t worry! When we were introduced, I did not know I was speaking to THE AUTHORITY on my favorite artist!”
By the end of the day, we had decided that YES! Wyeth would like to do a show in my California gallery sometime later that year. He smiled, shyly and said: “Have your people speak to my people, and they’ll arrange something…” I felt suddenly that I wanted to do this desperately and ventured: “Better talk to me, there’s no one else in the office unless it’s me”. He looked amused, and said: “Great! I like you already! When you’re back in California, call the museum with your number, and I will call you back”…..
…..And that’s how Maxfield Parrish was in a way instrumental in persuading Andrew Wyeth to do his first ever West Coast show in my gallery in San Mateo, California.
Wyeth Limited Edition Bicentennial Prints
My regular clients will soon be contacted and appraised of the details of a set of 1976 Metropolitan Museum of Art bicentennial Andrew Wyeth limited edition prints, which are to be offered for sale through me at this time.
In regards to our 2020 exhibit of Parrish originals currently for sale, please view all the paintings, watercolors, and drawings by clicking on the Art for Sale link above.
Contact Alma Gilbert for the full catalogue and price list: firstname.lastname@example.org