American Masterpieces from Dryads Green Gallery
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Artist Name:         James King Bonnar
Artist Dates:         1885 - 1961
Painting Title:       Winter in Vermont
Painting Date:       No Date
Medium:              Oil on Canvas
Signature:             Signed Lower Right
Provenance:          Private Collection
Condition:             Excellent
Size Unframed:      15 3/4 x 15 1/4
Frame Condition:   Mint Reproduction
Artist Best Price:   $11,000
Offered At:           CALL
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Curator's Comments: A painter's painter, Bonnar was the youngest of the New England
painters gathered around Emile Gruppe, Anthony Thieme, and Aldro Hibbard. We strongly
believe that his work is receiving increasing attention and progressively finding a reception that
matches what his fellow masters are bringing. He was true to the New England pattern, painting
Rockport marines in summer (he had a summer home in the Portuguese fishing community
section of Gloucester) and Vermont snowscapes in the winter. But his excellence is easily seen in
the work we are calling
Winter in Vermont, where his cobalt blue hues are in perfect harmony
(our image is deficient when it comes to the painting's excellence). We show a comparative
Bonnar work, portraying
Mount Equinox in Manchester, Vermont to illustrate his individual
technique with sky blue heavens.
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More important for us is the snowscape
itself, in which Bonnar catches the
quintessential aim of his fellow painters by
showing the fallen snow as the true painter
of the landscape. Nature remains in
perfection beneath a coat of many white
colors. We are reminded of an old Japanese
proverb, which claims that success only
comes to fisherman who know the shape of
the unseen bottom of the sea wherever
they work, similarly, in Bonnar's work, we
know that the terrain that rests perfectly
beneath the snow.
Winter in Vermont is a
white gem with perfect perspective, which
illustrates Bonnar's mastery.
Bonnar was born in North Adams, MA and lived in Newtonville, MA. He graduated from the
Massachusetts School of Art where he study with Joseph DeCamp, and also with Ernest Major, and
the influence of DeCamp is clear in his brushwork. He was the president of the Copley Society of
Boston and exhibited for many years at the North Shore Arts Association (founded in 1922 by
Hibbard, William Paxton, Frederick Mulhaupt, Edmund Tarbell and Frank Benson) and the
Rockport Art Association. Bonnar was also a founder of the Newton, MA Art Association, and his
works were included in the Newton Museum's association retrospective. Bonnar's best works are
just beginning to appear as they leave the private collections of patrons who purchased his works
directly, and we expect his technique to bring him continuing recognition as these works reach
market.