Lot 580    

Joseph Henry Sharp, Portrait of Elk Foot (Jerry), Taos,
2006, Spring Decorative Arts, June 17
oil on canvas, titled on verso in Sharp's hand. 16" x 12" (w/o frame), 21.5" x 17.5" (w/frame). Elk Foot, or “Jerry”, was a popular sitter among Taos Art Colony artists and he was especially favored by Sharp. In this painting, he, is painted in profile and dressed in a colorful Crow costume in order to make the painting appealing to a wider audience. However, Elk Foot’s hair is still braided in typical Taos fashion, so Sharp does not seem to be intent on a complete transformation.

Joseph Henry Sharp (1859-1953) is considered the father of the Taos Society of Artists. His extraordinary output of paintings in his long career made him one of the most prolific and prominent painters of the American Indian. Although he is known for his images of the American west, his other accomplishments included years of teaching in Cincinnati and publication of his works in several magazines.

Sharp was born in Bridgeport, Ohio in 1859. When he was a boy, his hearing was severely damaged as a result of a near-drowning incident. At age 12, his father died, and at age 14, Sharp was forced to drop out of school because his hearing loss had deteriorated and was virtually complete. Sharp then moved to Cincinnati to live with his aunt, and it was here that his formal art education began. He managed to enroll in the McMicken School of Design while still working and providing his mother with financial support. Afterwards he continued at the Cincinnati Art Academy and at age 22, he took his first trip abroad to Antwerp. Over the next decade, Sharp would study in Munich, Spain, Italy and Paris with notable artists such as Karl Marr and Cincinnati friend Frank Duveneck. In Cincinnati, Sharp was a student of Henry Farny, another renowned painter of Indians. Sharp insisted on going West and it was suggested by Farny that he study the Pueblo Indians of New Mexico. His first trip was to Santa Fe in 1882. In 1893, Sharp discovered the Taos area, and became fascinated by the mixture of Indian and Spanish cultures. He also began teaching figure painting the year before at the Cincinnati Art Academy, and during the next several years he often split his time between Taos and Cincinnati, where he taught figure painting at the Art Academy. Sharp, however, did not restrict himself to Taos and its inhabitants. He realized that the Plains Indians were moving towards extinction, so he made several trips north, especially to document Indian survivors of the Battle of Little Big Horn.

Having achieved significant success with his artistic pursuits, Sharp resigned his teaching position in Cincinnati in 1902 and split his time between the Crow Agency in Montana and Taos. He was rapidly becoming the most highly regarded portrait artist of American Indians. In Montana alone, Sharp executed over 200 portraits of Plains Indians. After he had exhausted his possibilities at the Crow Agency, he moved permanently to Taos in 1912. From there he continued to work and travel until his death in 1953 at age 93.

While Sharp is revered in the artistic community for the founding of the Taos Society, one can persuasively argue that his contribution to study of the history and culture of the American Indian is far more important. He left behind thousands of paintings, and his documentation of Indian life is unrivaled. It was his constant goal to capture the essence of Indian life during a period when their cultures were slowly deteriorating.

Ex Collection Marge and Charles Schott

Reduced in size that results in the loss of the signature.
Sold: $71,875.00
Price includes
Buyer's Premium
      Ask a Question

All Images

don't miss

an opportunity to bid. You can't win if you're not in.

sign up to bid

what's it worth?

ask the experts

sell your item

start selling
California Landscape Signed <i>Alden</i>,
Lot # 843 - California Landscape Signed Alden,
oil on board, signed lower right. A colorful, coastal California landscape at sunset, with thickly applied paint to accentuate the rocky cliffs. In a gold-painted frame; 23.5" x 35.5" (w/o frame), 32" x 44" (w/frame). > Item Details
Tobacco Flannel
Lot # 640 - Tobacco Flannel "Flags of the World" Pieced Quilt,
ca 1910, constructed of tobacco premiums imprinted with the flags of world joined by red cotton sashing; all surrounded by a wine colored wide border. Back is a bright yellow cotton solid. Machine pieced, hand-quilted in a diamond pattern; 82" x 84". > Item Details
Copper Trench Art Hanging Letterbox,
Lot # 677 - Copper Trench Art Hanging Letterbox,
American, 20th century, constructed from soldered salvaged materials. These were typically made by combat soldiers during the war. Tombstone-form having a hinged door, exterior hammer-decorated with dimples arranged in various geometric designs. In the center of the arch is a salvaged button or b... > Item Details
Queen Anne Tilt-Top Tea Table in Original Surface,
Lot # 82 - Queen Anne Tilt-Top Tea Table in Original Surface,
in mahogany with oak secondary. A one-board top supported by a vasiform column having 3 cabriole legs terminating in pad feet; spider appears to be original. Retains a wonderful oxidized original surface; 27" high x 34" diameter. > Item Details
E.T. Hurley Artist's Proof, <i>Produce Vendor, Findlay Market</i>,
Lot # 75 - E.T. Hurley Artist's Proof, Produce Vendor, Findlay Market,
hand-colored aquatint on paper, signed in the plate, penciled lower left AP ED. 8 and pencil-signed lower right. An unusual image of Findlay Market. In a modern frame 9.5" x 12.25" (plate), 17.75" x 20" (w/frame). Edward Timothy Hurley (1869-1950), Cincinnati painter, photographer, and Rookwood P... > Item Details
Early Korean Blanket Chest with Original Brass Mounts,
Lot # 429 - Early Korean Blanket Chest with Original Brass Mounts,
19th century, of elm having a lithographed paper label glued to inside of door depicting birds and butterflies; supported by a separate base of a later period; in a dark finish with wear; 37" high x 34" wide x 16" deep. > Item Details
Large Spanish Copper Lustre Charger with Bird Motif,
Lot # 768 - Large Spanish Copper Lustre Charger with Bird Motif,
18th or 19th century, of earthenware and decorated with a spread-winged crested bird and various floral motifs; 4" high x 15.5" diameter. > Item Details
Allan Houser, <i>Indian Dancing</i>,
Lot # 603 - Allan Houser, Indian Dancing,
silkscreen on blue paper, signed lower right (no copyright statment). A dynamic image of an Indian performing a ceremonial dance. In a modern frame; 6" x 5.25" (sight), 12" x 10" (w/frame).Allan Houser (1914-1994) was born the grandson of Apache chief Geronimo's interpreter. He is primarily known... > Item Details
Rare Jacquard-Woven Yorktown Centennial Tapestry,
Lot # 638 - Rare Jacquard-Woven Yorktown Centennial Tapestry,
beautifully woven with large medallion portrait of Washington with two smaller portraits of Lafayette and General Steuben with large image of monument at Yorktown, patriotic border with flags and rosettes all with hanging tassels; 49" wide x 117" long excluding tassels. > Item Details
Edward Williams Clay, Portrait of a Gentleman Smoking a Pipe,
Lot # 248 - Edward Williams Clay, Portrait of a Gentleman Smoking a Pipe,
ink and watercolor on wove paper, circa 1826. This drawing depicts a very relaxed pilot with hands in his pockets, smoking a pipe. He is dressed in a blue suit, wide brimmed hat and is wearing an anchor pin that is attached to his vest. Partial label on verso that reads ....Pilot....Quesnel off t... > Item Details
Early Pressed and Blown Whale Oil Lamp,
Lot # 212 - Early Pressed and Blown Whale Oil Lamp,
mid-19th century, of colorless flint glass, and having a pressed, molded scallop and point base and baluster column with free blown circular font with attached drip guard; 10.75" high x 4.75" diameter at the base. > Item Details
George M. Hammell, Coastal Landscape,
Lot # 405 - George M. Hammell, Coastal Landscape,
watercolor, signed bottom right G Hammell 1911 and entitled lower left and on verso The Edge of the Sea Marblehead. Image of steep bluffs alongside the ocean. 11" x 17" (image only), 17.5" x 23" (w/frame). George Milton Hammell (1852-1916) was a Cincinnati artist who exhibited at the Cincinnati Art ... > Item Details
Early San Francisco Lantern,
Lot # 209 - Early San Francisco Lantern,
late 19th-early 20th century, made of sheet copper and brass having an oil-burning lamp (wick not present) behind a glass window with hinged bezel. Interior fitted with a nickel-plated brass reflector. Bent wire swing handle, brass identification plate attached near ventilator reads BAUER LAMP & R... > Item Details
Dogon Style <i>Satimbe</i> Mask,
Lot # 453 - Dogon Style Satimbe Mask,
from Mali, 20th century. Hand-carved wood dance mask with statuesque female figure standing atop stylized rectangular antelope, length 31" x 6.5". Satimbe has two different mythical interpretations: one thought maintains that a mythical woman was the first to discover the use of masks and the other ... > Item Details
Four Pennsylvania Rainbow Rag Runners,
Lot # 395 - Four Pennsylvania Rainbow Rag Runners,
19th century, attributed to the Lancaster County Amish. Three are identical and from the same loom, one is slightly different; 36" x 180" and 41" x 148", respectively. > Item Details
Set of Four New Hampshire Windsors in Black Paint,
Lot # 271 - Set of Four New Hampshire Windsors in Black Paint,
attributed to the Portsmouth area, ca 1820, mixed woods. Each having an oblong (nearly round) shaped seat, 7 spindles and distinctively shaped scrolled crest rail. In an older black paint; 18" seat height x 35.5" overall height. See Evans, American Windsor Chairs, fig. 7-69 for a similar example.... > Item Details
Set of Gilded Coalport Porcelain Dessert Plates Retailed by Tiffany,
Lot # 308 - Set of Gilded Coalport Porcelain Dessert Plates Retailed by Tiffany,
lot of 11, of bone china, by Coalport for Tiffany & Co., and lavishly hand-decorated with gold relief scrollwork on the surround. Marked below with underglaze green Coalport crown backstamp, Tiffany & Co. / New York and hand painted pattern number in red Z.2492; 9.25" diameter. > Item Details
Early Map of Romagna, Italy,
Lot # 673 - Early Map of Romagna, Italy,
17th century, hand-colored engraving on laid paper, titled ROMAGNA olim FLAMINIA. In a moulded and gilt frame; 15.5" x 19.5" (sight), 24.75" x 28.75" (w/frame). > Item Details
Copper Sailboat Weathervane,
Lot # 517 - Copper Sailboat Weathervane,
probably American, first half 20th century. Constructed of copper sheet, tube and wire; a sloop having two sails with a pennant flying atop the mast. In an oxidized verdigris surface; 21.5" high x 21" long x 3.5" deep. > Item Details
Four Identified Peale's Museum Silhouettes with Edward Williams Clay Provenance,
Lot # 252 - Four Identified Peale's Museum Silhouettes with Edward Williams Clay Provenance,
four hollow-cut silhouettes all with pencil annotation by Edward Williams Clay. One having an inscription below the portrait, J.G. 1822; additionally, above the portrait James O. Graham. Another having an inscription below the portrait Dr. Geo. Cuthbert 15 June 1825. Another having an inscription ... > Item Details
ITEMS 1-20 of 20