Obata: Snow-laden Pines on a Mountain Slope Ink Painting (SOLD)

  • Sold.

Artist: Chiura Obata   (1885-1975)
Title: Snow-Laden Pines on a Mountain Slope in the High Sierra
Date: Undated; ca. 1930s-40s

Sumi painting on paper of two snow-laden pine trees on a steep mountain slope. Although he might have painted this from memory, the scene is characteristic of the landscapes that he visited often in the High Sierra. The weathered pine in the foreground seems to be missing most of its windward branches and needles, but it holds its ground on the mountain slope. Obata has used a rather large brush to capture the essence of forms in just a few strokes. It is probable that this is a teaching/exhibition work, as Obata has not identified the place nor dated the work. Obata’s training in sumi painting began in Japan at the age of seven. He wrote that there were three disciplines essential to the practice of sumi-e, beginning with “Before the student touches a brush to paper, his mind must be as tranquil as the surface of a calm, undisturbed lake.” (See Chiura Obata: An American Modern, page 71.) Obata’s economy of line and mastery of the Japanese brush are practically unequalled in 20th c. American art. He influenced a generation of California artists, and at his own count taught more than 10,000 students. The University of California, Berkeley, where he taught for almost 20 years, preserved all of his paintings and sketches while Obata and his family were interned in Utah during WWII. Provenance: Estate of Chiura Obata. Includes a certificate of authenticity from the estate of the artist.

Condition: Excellent condition overall, with pin holes near corners and small tear at bottom.. Some wrinkles, mostly from the watercolor process. Obata used Japanese paper that he ordered from Japan.
Dimensions: 52.5 x 39 cm  cm
Provenance:  Provenance: Estate of Chiura Obata. Includes a certificate of authenticity from the estate of the artist.
Signature: Signed Chiura Obata and Artist's seal, lower right, in red