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David Leffel (New Mexico/New York, b. 1931) oil on canvas landscape painting titled "Farmhouse with Chickens, Pietrasanta" depicting an Italian farm at the base of a mountain range below a cloudy blue sky. Signed and dated "Dal .99." lower right. Additionally signed and titled en verso of protective foam core board. Housed in a giltwood frame with leaf molded rabbet edge and lunette molding at outer edge. Sight – 12" H x 19 7/8" W. Framed – 18 3/8" H x 26 1/2" W. Late 20th century. Provenance: the collection of Valleau Caruthers, Brentwood, TN, who studied under Leffel; acquired directly from the artist. Biography: David Leffel was born in Brooklyn and attended the Parsons School of Design. After a brief period working in commercial art, he enrolled in the Art Students League in 1959. There he was introduced to chiaroscuro painting under the guidance of Frank Mason. He was also heavily influenced by the work of the 17th century Dutch masters, particularly Rembrandt Van Rijn. By 1972, Leffel had become a teacher at the Art Students League, and he eventually went on to write the book "Oil Painting Secrets from a Master" (Watson/Guptill, 1995). Leffel moved to New Mexico in 1992 to continue painting and teaching. He was awarded the Gold Medal for Oil from the National Academy of Western Art, and his works are held in museums including the J.B. Speed Art Museum in Louisville, Kentucky, and at Princeton University in New Jersey. The Frederick Weisman Museum of Art in California recently conducted a retrospective of his work. In his book on Leffel, artist/author Michael Zakian calls Leffel "one of the founders of the contemporary realist art movement." CONDITION: Overall very good condition.