SOLD! for $14,160.00.
(Note: Prices realized include a buyer's premium.)
- Low Estimate: $24,000.00
- High Estimate: $28,000.00
- Realized: $14,160.00
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Child’s polychrome paint-decorated pine blanket chest, attributed to “the Scraggly Artist,” Montgomery-Berks County, Pennsylvania border. Molded, hinged top with blue-green sponge painted decoration, surrounding a central cartouche decorated with a spray of tulips, free-hand painted in dark blue, red and yellow, and outlined in a salmon border. The tulip decoration is repeated in two side-by-side painted panels on the front of the dovetailed case, which sits atop a lower section with two drawers, and a base having ochre sponge painted decoration extending onto dovetailed bracket feet. Back is plain and unpainted. Case sections and base are divided by applied bands of molding in solid salmon paint. Interior well has lift top till. Drawers are constructed with wedge-pin dovetails, and one is dated “1800” in salmon paint on the exterior side. 19 1/4″ H x 28″ W x 14″ D. Provenance: Private Tennessee collection, found in Alabama. This chest is attributed to the so-called “Scraggly Artist,” a term coined by Monroe Fabian in his book “The Pennsylvania-German Decorated Chest,” to describe an unknown artisan whose paint decoration is executed in a similar “disheveled, yet controlled” style (for similar examples see figs. 150 & 151). For a similarly decorated miniature chest, attributed to Lehigh Valley, refer to the sale of the Richard and Rosemarie Machmer collection, Pook and Pook Auction, Oct. 24-25, 2008, lot 608. Another similarly decorated miniature chest, attributed to Berks County, was sold in Sotheby’s auction of American Folk Art from the Sandy and Julie Palley collection, Jan. 18, 2002, lot 931. CONDITION: Extensive analysis of paint samples by conservator / historic paint analyst Susan L. Buck, Ph.D., revealed numerous areas of original paint, including a few small areas on the feet and drawers, some of the top, and all of the front and both sides. Buck noted that some repainting has been done (refer to blacklight photos), but the presence of original paint allowed the colors and patterns to be restored to accurately reflect the original design. Feet of chest are original with minor repair, as are the iron butt hinges, lock, and glue blocks. Early replacement of lid molding and front mid molding, small repairs to drawers, missing latch.