Les Amis de Beauford Delaney is partnering with the Wells International Foundation (WIF) to take the Beauford Delaney: Resonance of Form and Vibration of Color exhibition to the U.S.!

We value your support!

TO MAKE A DONATION, CLICK HERE.
(All or part of your gift through WIF may qualify as a charitable deductible in the U.S.)

Saturday, March 23, 2019

40th Anniversary of Beauford's Transition

Tuesday, March 26th will mark the 40th anniversary of Beauford's transition.

In commemoration, Les Amis is taking a look at what he was doing during his 40th year of life.

In 1941, Beauford was living at 181 Greene Street in Manhattan. According to his biographer, David Leeming, he was "already experimenting with pure abstractions concerned with light and color without reference to objective forms" at this time.

1941 was also the year that Beauford "came out" as a modernist with a one-man show at the Vendome art gallery in midtown Manhattan. His paintings entitled Greene Street,

Greene Street
(1940) Oil on canvas
Photo by André Moran from the Artsmia Web site
© Estate of Beauford Delaney
by permission of Derek L. Spratley, Esquire,
Court Appointed Administrator

Untitled (The Artist and Woman Seated),

Untitled (The Artist and Woman Seated)
(1940) Oil on linen canvas
762x914 mm; 30x36 inches
Signed and dated in oil, lower left
Image courtesy of Swann Auction Galleries
© Estate of Beauford Delaney
by permission of Derek L. Spratley, Esquire,
Court Appointed Administrator

and Dark Rapture

Dark Rapture
(1941) Oil on masonite
© Estate of Beauford Delaney
by permission of Derek L. Spratley, Esquire,
Court Appointed Administrator

were exhibited in this show.

In December 1941, several of Beauford's paintings were shown alongside the works of other African-American artists in an exhibition at Edith Halpert's Downtown Gallery. The New Yorker magazine singled out one of his abstract paintings, a "swirling red-and-yellow 'Still Life'" for comment.


Saturday, March 16, 2019

A Musical Interlude

Beauford loved and had quite an eclectic taste for music.

In a letter that Beauford wrote to his friend Al Hirschfeld in 1940, he talks about painting while listening to Billie Holiday and he recommends other recordings that he thinks his friend will benefit from having. One of these is "She's a Trucking Little Baby" by Blind Boy Fuller.

I had not heard of this artist before and looked up the song. Here it is for your enjoyment!


Saturday, March 9, 2019

Beauford in the "Four Sunday Painters" Exhibition at the Whitney Studio Galleries

Several years ago, I published an article about how Beauford came to show works at the Whitney Studio Galleries soon after he arrived in New York. I've recently learned more about this and am sharing the information below.

The show was entitled Exhibition by four Sunday painters : Arthur E. Cederquist, Beauford Delaney, Prosper Invernizzi, Kalman Oswald.

Cover for exhibition checklist
Source: Digital Culture of Metropolitan New York
Fair use

Beauford contributed twelve of the 40 works displayed in the exhibition, which ran from February 26-March 8, 1930. They are listed in the center panel of the image below.

Exhibition checklist
Source: Digital Culture of Metropolitan New York
Fair use

Juliana Force, director of purchasing and exhibition at the Whitney, bought two of Beauford's pastels on the first day of the show: Girl in Yellow Dress and Profile of Boy. She paid $25 for each work. (In today's dollars, she would have paid ~$730 per pastel.)

Shipping receipt for Juliana Force purchase
Source: Digital Culture of Metropolitan New York
Fair use

By the end of the show, all but two pastels were sold.

Saturday, March 2, 2019

Christie's Sells Beauford's Abstraction No. 4

Beauford's Abstraction No. 4 was auctioned by Christie's New York during its Post-War to Present sale on February 28.

Abstraction No. 4
(ca. 1965) Oil on canvas
51 x 38 1/8 in. (129.5 x 96.8 cm.)
signed 'Beauford Delaney' (upper right)
© Estate of Beauford Delaney
by permission of Derek L. Spratley, Esquire,
Court Appointed Administrator

The seller acquired the painting from Beauford's brother, Joseph, who acquired it from Beauford.

Abstraction No. 4's estimated sale price was $100,000 to $150,000. It sold for $387,000, including a buyer's premium of 20%.

For more information about the Post-War to Present sale, click HERE.