John Moran Auctioneers California and American Paintings Sale Slated for June 23, 2009
John Moran Auctioneers, Inc. is delighted to offer a strong selection of over 150 paintings, drawings and sculpture in our June 23rd sale of California and American Paintings. The offerings encompass California Plein Air painting, California Tonalism, California Style watercolors, important and historic Western art, East Coast and regional painting.
A rare Laguna Beach coastal view by William Wendt leads the California Plein Air selections. Estimated at $100,000 / 150,000, this 25" x 30" canvas dated 1915 showcases the artist's robust brushwork and an intense palette that contrasts the deep blues of the water with the brown and green coastal hillside.
'Docking' by Maurice Braun, estimated at $20,000 / 30,000, is a particularly fine example of the artist's fascination with both European and Southern California harbor scenes. Painted with the    pastel palette that Braun typically used for this subject, the oil depicts a group of boats beside a harbor village.
John Marshall Gamble’s landscapes of flower-filled California hillsides are always sought after. No exception will be “Bush Lupine Near Del Monte,” a classic example of Gamble’s work. The oil measuring 25’’ x 40’’ is offered at $90,000 / 120,000. 
Fresh to the market and a highlight of the East Coast selections is a lovely, sun-drenched pastoral scene of cows grazing by Edward Volkert, known as 'America's Cattle Painter.’ The 16" x 20" canvas showcases the artist's rich brushwork, masterful depiction of light and sensitivity to the subject, and is estimated at $10,000 / 15,000.
Three works by Swedish-American artist Birger Sandzen, an oil and two lithographs, will be offered. The oil, a nocturne titled ‘Moonlit Poplars,’ is a prime example of Sandzen’s ability to beautifully harmonize a vivid palette, bold composition and his trademark pointillist technique. It is estimated at $40,000 / 60,000.
An atmospheric coastal by William Trost Richards depicting a dramatic view of - presumably English - coastal cliffs, soaring birds and distant ships is estimated at $20,000 / 25,000. The watercolor and gouache on paper is signed and dated 1885.
Watercolors by artists from both coasts will feature prominently in the sale. Henry Gasser, known for his carefully composed, dynamic scenes of everyday life in his home state of New Jersey, is represented by a casein on paperboard titled "From Hamilton Hill". This particularly charming example of Gasser’s work, which was featured in a 1950 promotional brochure for Grumbacher artist supplies, is a detailed, bird’s-eye view of a coastal village blanketed in snow.
Other prominent watercolorists represented at the Moran sale include Millard Sheets, Emil Kosa, Jr., Milford Zornes, Phil Dike, and Percy Gray among others.
Bidders will also be pleased to find a strong selection of works by historic Western artists, including Charles Marion Russell, LaVerne Nelson Black, Katherine Steele, Gustave Baumann, Ernest Martin Hennings, Eanger Irving Couse and others. Russell’s beautifully executed ink drawing "The Whisperin' Disturbs Mr. Bear" reveals the artist's legendary sense of humor. Estimated at $15,000 / 20,000, it was widely exhibited and has been in private hands for many years.
Many other important California and American artists will be offered, among them Charles Rollo Peters, Will Sparks, Granville Redmond, Paul Lauritz, Edgar Payne, Marion Kavanagh Wachtel, Joseph Raphael, Hovsep Pushman, Joe Duncan Gleason, Alson Clark, Alfred Mitchell, Paul Lauritz, and Conrad Buff.

John Moran Auctioneers’ California and American Fine Art Sale will begin at 6:30pm on Tuesday, February 17, 2009, at the Pasadena Convention Center in Pasadena, CA. Previewing will begin at 12 noon. Bidding for this sale is available from the floor, by phone and absentee as well as online via A fully illustrated catalog of this sale is available on the website at

For more information on this important sale, please call the offices of John Moran Auctioneers at (626) 793-1833 or visit their website at