Rare Early Painting By Robert Barrell Signed and Dated 1933 Art Deco Harlequin and Flapper

Robert Barrell (1912–1995) early Art Deco work on paper. Barrell was most famous for his involvement with the artist movement Indian Space Painters Group, active circa 1940-1946.
A Robert Barrell piece at his beginning of his career, dated one year before his entry into the Art’s Students’ League in 1933.

Sturgis Antiques is very fortunate and proud to have a piece of historical and an early example of this artist’s work.

Medium: gauche on artist paper.

His detail developing and with his timing of Art Deco, the style of figures and techniques will be later developed in the art of the WPA and beyond.

This Art Deco inspired piece resonates with the early stylized style of Art Deco. This movement and many of the artistic figures will later go on to be Expressionist and WPA Social Commentary Artists.
The Dancing figures in front of the bold painted curtains, showing the dramatic posing and style of the Art Deco Movement. The woman’s black bob hair style and the harlequin dance, legs up and arced.

Size:  12” x 16”
Condition: Fine, small marks on the edge of paper from being in a frame. No tears or visible flaking to the gauche. Please see image for details

1933 - 1937- Enrolled as a scholarship student at the Art Students’ League where he studied with Bridgeman, Sternberg, Leahy, Miller, Newal, Brook and Abeis
1939 - 1940- Began his professional art career when he assisted Carl Roters on the creation of two murals in the Con Edison and Crosley Buildings for the 1939-40 World’s Fair. He also assisted Edward Lanning with the New York Public Library’s main building at 42nd Street and Fifth Avenue.

“Robert Barrell studied at the Arts Students League and the Hans Hofmann School, though he never enrolled officially in Hofmann’s classes. Barrell spent much time with Wheeler absorbing Northwest Native American art at the American Museum of Natural History. He eventually painted five murals for the museum as an WPA staff artist

“Like other Indian Space painters, Barrell sought to take Cubism to its next stage, combining elements of Surrealism, Cubism and Native Ameican art in vividly original compositions. He exhibited at 57th Street galleries through the 1940s, but in 1948 turned away from abstraction; as he later explained, he “gave up Indian Space to reclaim the image.”





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