CARL J. NORDELL
Presented in its original period Newcomb Macklin frame
Date: c. 1916 Verso: Exhibition Labels
Size: Height 46 ½ inches Width 38½ inches (framed)
Acknowledged as an important American Impressionist, this artist is known for painting in the plein-air technique. Born in Copenhagen, Denmark in 1885, he emigrated to the United States in 1895. His studies included the Rhode Island School of Design, graduating in 1905; then New York's Art Students League where he studied under George Bridgman (1865-1943) and Frank Dumond (1865-1951), and the Boston Museum of Fine Arts where he studied under renowned Boston Impressionist, Edmund C. Tarbell (1862-1938). In 1909 Nordell was awarded the James William Paige Traveling Scholarship allowing him to study in Paris at the Academie Julian under Jean-Paul Laurens (1838-1921). Nordell returned to Boston in 1911 and began exhibiting at the Art Institute of Chicago, the National Academy of Design, and the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. He resided in Westfield, N.Y., in Chautauqua County and maintained a studio in his home where he taught art.
Nordell was a member of numerous art associations, including the North Shore Arts Association, Art Students League of New York, Boston Art Club, Salmagundi Club, Print Makers' Society of California, Brooklyn Society of Etchers, Allied Artists of America, Providence Art Club, and North Shore Arts Association. Today his art will be found in the collections of the New York Public Library, Cleveland Museum of Art, the Smithsonian Institution, Dartmouth College, Wellesley College, Williams College, Hunter College, Oberlin College, Victoria and Albert Museum, London, and the Bibliotheque Nationale, Paris
Highly regarded throughout his career, numerous awards were to follow: the Clarke Prize from the Corcoran Gallery in 1912; Silver Medal for Painting at the 1915 Panama-Pacific International Exposition, San Francisco, California; the 1917 1st prize for painting at the Swedish American Exhibition, Chicago, Ill.; 1923 Salmagundi Club Shaw Prize for Etching, Salmagundi Club, New York, N.Y.; 1st prize for Figure Painting, North Shore Art Association, Gloucester, Mass.; 1st prize for Landscape Painting, Nashville, Tenn., in 1930.
Under the influence of Tarbell, he perfected delicately finished, pearly interiors, capturing images of young women pursuing domestic activities with the Tarbellesque reserve -- distinction, sincerity and simplicity. He received critical acclaim for technique, color and light. He flourished at a time when Impressionism still occupied center stage in Boston. The use of light is, therefore, central. As was characteristic of American Impressionism generally, the human face was given much more attention than in Europe. The beautiful figure in this painting is complemented by her delicate costume, lavish hues and the absolute assuredness of hand for which Nordell is noted.
Examples of this genre are extremely desirable, but sadly superb examples of Nordell’s paintings are scarce. Rarely seen on the art market, this important example of his work is presented in pristine condition and is signed by the artist. This painting was exhibited at the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., Sixth Exhibition Contemporary American Oil Paintings, 1916, citing artist, title and address of Fenway Studios, Boston, Ref. number 384, title, Morning, verso.