Agnes C. Sims (1910-1990)

Agnes C. Sims (1910-1990)

The painting is oil and sand mixed on board.

The painting measures 46×26 inches

 Collection of Farhat Art Museum.

“Agi” Sims is known for paintings and sculptures inspired by prehistoric rock art of New Mexico. Born in Devon, Pennsylvania, Sims attended the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art and the Philadelphia School of Design for Women. She managed a traveling marionette theater before establishing herself as a textile and needlework designer in Philadelphia. After a visit to New Mexico in 1938, Sims returned to Philadelphia, packed her belongings, and returned to make Santa Fe her permanent home. She opened a classical record store in an eighteenth-century farmhouse on Canyon Road, but the shortage of shellac during the War put her out of business. Sims then became a building contractor (skills taught her by her contractor father), purchasing and renovating historic houses around Santa Fe. She later bought a nineteenth-century house with acreage on Canyon Road and built a compound including a house for herself and one for her long-time partner, Mary Louise Aswell, the fiction editor at Harper’s Bazaar who had brought writers such as Eurdora Welty and Truman Capote to the public’s attention. Shortly after her arrival, a friend introduced Sims to the Galisteo Basin south of Santa Fe which was dotted with the ruins of prehistoric Indian Pueblos, and home to tens of thousands of ancient petroglyphs. The rock art captivated Sims and became her primary inspiration for the rest of her career. Over the next decade she recorded 3000 petroglyphs in drawings and thousands more in photographs. In 1949 she received a grant from the American Philosophical Society to further her research, and in 1950 she published a portfolio of selected rock at drawings in her monograph, San Cristobal Petroglyphs. Most of Sims paintings and sculptures were inspired by petroglyphs, but unlike her documentary drawings they never were literal copies. Rather she adopted and adapted the two-dimensional representations of people and animal into an art that fit comfortably into the larger world of mid-century modernism. She used simple, idiosyncratic figures to create her own symbolism, the original meanings of the ancient art being mostly lost to the past. Sims worked in a wide array of media. Her oil paintings on canvas often were mixed with an earthen medium which gave them a rough, stone-like texture. She developed a batik-like resist process for painting on cloth, and used it to produce large, un-stretched wall hangings. She used this technique to produce an architectural frieze 3.5 feet high and almost 150 feet long which still adorns the Century Bank lobby in downtown Santa Fe. Sims was a prolific sculptor, working in wood, stone, bronze, terracotta, fiberglass, and polyester. Sims was given one-woman shows at the Brooklyn Museum, U.S. Embassy in London, Folger Library, Colorado Springs Fine Art Center, Santa Barbara Museum of Art, McNay Art Institute in San Antonio, Texas, and the Museum of Fine Art in Santa Fe. She also showed her work at the gallery she owned on Canyon Road. At times, she rented studio space in her gallery building to local artisans, hoping to spark a revival of early New Mexico arts and crafts. Although she did not offer formal instruction, Sims was known for her generous encouragement of younger artists. In the large patio of the Canyon Road compound, she hosted public performances of original dance, music, and theater and readings by local authors. She also was known for her love of good food and scotch and living strictly on her own terms. She was honored with the New Mexico Governor’s Award for Excellence and Achievements in the Arts a few months before her death from Alzheimer’s disease in 1990.

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Roger Marcel Limouse (1894 – 1990)

Roger Marcel Limouse (1894 - 1990)

Roger Marcel Limouse (1894 – 1990)
Mediterranean Cityscape
Measures 40×30 (101.60cm x 76.20cm)
oil on canvas signed lower left.
Farhat Art Museum Collection

Roger Limouse was born in Algeria, he studied art under Jean Paul Laurens at the Academie Julian* in Paris. It was at the Academie Julian, that he met and shared a studio with the painter Jules Cavaillès. After completing his tuition, Limouse embarked on a period of travel. He returned to North Africa during the 1930s and then went to France, where he joined Cavaillès, Roland Oudot, Maurice Brianchon, André Planson, Christian Caillard, Raymond Legeuelt, and Kostia Terechkovitch to form the Painters of Poetic Reality, la réalité poétique. This group was really an affiliation of friends and kindred spirits rather than a movement with a manifesto and he exhibited several works with them and took part in a major retrospective exhibition in 1956. He also exhibited at various Salons including des Artistes Francais*, des Independants, d’Automne* and des Tuileries. His work was clearly influenced by the Fauves and to a lesser extent the Cubists, but he was also revered as a painter of interiors. He was greatly influenced by Edouard Vuillard and Pierre Bonnard – one of the greatest painters of such scenes – who spoke of Limouse’s ‘heart, sensuality and intimacy.’ Because of his love of vibrant colour, Roger Limouse has been called the last of the Fauves*. The vintners Nicolas in 1958 exclusively used paintings from Limouse to illustrate their back catalogue of exceptional fine wines. The Museum of Modern Art, Paris has three paintings by Limouse in its permanent collection

Noel Harry Leaver (1889 – 1951)

Noel Harry Leaver (1889 - 1951)

Noel Harry Leaver (1889 – 1951)
Title:A mosque in Algeria
10″ x 14.25″( 25.40cm x 36.20cm)
Watercolor and pencil/Board.
Farhat Art Museum Collection.

Title: An arched entrance to a street. 10" x 14.25"( 25.40cm x 36.20cm). Watercolor and pencil/Board. Farhat Art Museum Collection

Title: An arched entrance to a street.
10″ x 14.25″( 25.40cm x 36.20cm).
Watercolor and pencil/Board.
Farhat Art Museum Collection

Noel Harry Leaver was born in Austwick, Yorkshire in 1889, but is better known as a Burnley artist, the town in which he lived and worked for most of his life. He is most famous as the painter of distinctive North African views or ‘Easterns’, although his work includes a much wider range of landscapes, town views, interiors and even still life. His earlier paintings are softer and looser than his later more accomplished works, but still show his fine understanding of detail and construction. He was particularly known for his treatment of skies. He was one of the youngest ever pupils of the Royal College of Art*, where he began studies at age sixteen. At the RCA he followed the classic training route doing modules in Architecture, Painting Modelling and Design passing first class in all. At the age of 21 he was awarded the College’s full Associateship (ARCA) and as top student won the first of several Travelling Scholarships. He used them to travel to visit Europe and North Africa. It was in this period that he started painting his North African scenes with vivid blue skies, arches and mosques for which he became most known. He also painted English and Continental townscapes and did many paintings of English cathedral cities and castles, including some internal church studies. Other areas were his landscapes, although these are less common in his later work and rarer still are his flower studies. Leaver returned from Italy to England in 1912 to take up the first of his teaching posts at Halifax School of Art where he worked until 1915. After this he taught at the Burnley School of Art up until the mid 1930’s. His earlier works in which he is still developing his style are usually signed in mixed lower & upper case Noel H LEAVER ARCA; these works are from the period 1920-1929. Few works earlier than this are found, and those that are often dated. In later life when his reputation was established he usually signed in capitals NOEL H LEAVER, dropping the ARCA. Works signed like this are most likely post 1929. At least forty-one of his works were exported to the USA via the agents Brown and Bigelow* in Minnesota during his later period of working.

Mazini

Mazini

 

Artist Mazini was an Italian artist who lived in Cairo by the turn of the 20th century. Known for his orientalist work of watercolor paintings depicting the Souks in Egypt. This example of his work measures 18×24 watercolor on paper. The painting is very unique in that, it has is hand carved frame in the Arabic style of the period. This painting is part of the Farhat Art Collection.