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Grandma Moses Folk Tempera Painting "The Sycamore Farm," 1944

Item Details

Anna Mary Robertson “Grandma” Moses (American, 1860 – 1961)
The Sycamore Farm, 1944
Tempera on Masonite
Signed to the lower left
Dated July 26, 1944 and numbered 782 on a Grandma Moses label affixed to the verso
Minneapolis Institute of Arts label to verso reads "No. L65.219.13 / Lent by Mr. Jerome Hill
Galerie St. Etienne copyright label adhered to verso

Otto Kallir, Grandma Moses, no. 405 (illustrated)

Minneapolis, Minnesota, Minneapolis Institute of Arts, on loan, 1965

Galerie St. Etienne, New York
Jerome Hill
Mrs. Shannon Kelley Clark, Blowing Rock, North Carolina
Christie’s, New York, Important American Paintings, Drawings, and Sculpture, May 25, 1994, lot #158
Private collection, Ohio

Grandma Moses, (Anna Mary Robertson) lived a simple rural life that was reflected in the folk art paintings that she became famous for late in her life. She left home at the age of twelve to work on a neighboring farm, married Thomas Moses in 1887, and after a period working in Virginia, settled with her husband onto their own farm in Eagle Bridge, New York. It wasn’t until after she retired from farm life and the death of her husband in 1927 that she devoted herself to painting. She began creating primitive narrative works that portrayed the simple life she had known. Her career was launched in 1938 when Louis Caldor, a collector from New York, happened upon her paintings in a local pharmacy. The following year her works were included in the exhibit Contemporary Unknown Painters at the Museum of Modern Art, New York and shortly after Otto Kallir, a Manhattan gallerist, produced her first solo show titled What a Farm Woman Painted. Grandma Moses’ celebrity grew, spurred by her charming, forthright personality, and her work that celebrated an idealized way of American life that was rapidly disappearing, eventually earning her a place as a cultural icon.

Her paintings are held in many distinguished institutions including the Bennington Museum in Bennington, Vermont; the Brooklyn Museum, New York City; the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City; the National Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington D.C; the Smithsonian American Art Museum; The Phillips Collection, Washington D.C; the Phoenix Art Museum, Arizona, and many others.


- examined under UV light; small spot of paint flaking to upper right; scratch mark to upper center of painting; negligible scratch marks scattered through surface of painting; large chip to upper left of frame verso; small cracks and scuffs scattered throughout frame.


33.75" W x 27.75" H x 2.75" D

- measures frame; Masonite board measures approximately 26" W x 20" H x .25" D.

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