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CURRENT COLUMN

The Case of Dubious Due Diligence
The Case of Dubious Due Diligence

The Case of the Olympic Posters
The Case of the Olympic Posters

The Case of the Solitary Surrealist
The Case of the Solitary Surrealist

The Case of the Recalcitrant Rembrandt
The Case of the Recalcitrant Rembrandt

The Case of the Ambiguity of Authenticity
The Case of the Ambiguity of Authenticity

The Case of Margaret Keane’s Big-Eyed Boys
The Case of Margaret Keane’s Big-Eyed Boys

The Case of Clarence’s Château-Gaillard
The Case of Clarence’s Château-Gaillard

The Case of the M.S. Nov 1910
The Case of the M.S. Nov 1910

The Case of Cruise Ship Art: Part 2
The Case of the Archangel Michael Defeating Satan

The Case of Cruise Ship Art: Part 2
The Case of Cruise Ship Art: Part 2

The Case of Mary Most Holy Mother of Light
The Case of Mary Most Holy Mother of Light

The Case of Leni and the Nuba
The Case of Leni and the Nuba

The Case of the Seductive Souvenir
The Case of the Seductive Souvenir

The Case of the Irish Surrealist
The Case of the Irish Surrealist

The Case of the Developing Dalí
The Case of the Developing Dalí

The Case of Nano-D Technology
The Case of Nano-D Technology

The Case of Dabatable Donations
The Case of Debatable Donations

Edgar Heap of Birds
The Case of the Long-tailed Monkey

Edgar Heap of Birds
The Case of Edgar Heap of Birds

Silent Song
The Case of the Silent Song

Aficionado
The Case of Alex and the Art Aficionado

Portrait
The Case of the Privacy of the Publicity Photo

Potter
The Case of the Potter's Portraits

The Case of the Coy Cornelius Krieghoff

The Case of the Political Portraitist

The Case of the Reconsidered Revolution

The Case of the Anabiotic Abbey

The Case of the Phoney Picasso

The Case of Setsuko Piroche

The Case of being on the Forest Edge with Vern Simpson

The Case of Being at the End of the Storm with Loren Adams

The Case of Being: Under the Table with Thomas

The Case of Wyland's Whales on Walls

The Case of A.Y. Jackson's Smart River (Alaska)

The Case of Red Fish with Blue Breasts

The Case of Looe Poole

The Case of Camaldoli

The Case of MS

The Case of the Misattributed Emily Carrs

The Case of the Doubtful Dürer

The Case of the Purloined Picasso

The Case of the Defrocked Duchess of Devonshire

The Case of the First Wife

The Case of the Dodford Priory

The Case of the Unknown Actor

Art Services & Materials


Confessions Back

Practical Art History
(or Confessions of a Fine Art Appraiser)

by Jim Finlay
Finlay Fine Art & Wealth Management
jim_finlay@telus.net

Chapter 15. The Case of being at the End of the Storm with Loren Adams

I became aware of the work of Loren D. Adams some eight years ago when a colleague was kind enough to arrange a private viewing of a large oil painting from about 1973 which I believe was entitled Sunset Symphony. The work was a magnificent interpretation of a colourful High Realism fantasy marine-scape and was absolutely breathtaking in size (approximately 48 x 60 inches), complexity of composition, and attention to minute detail.


Loren D. Adams, End of the Storm (1974), oil on linen, 30 x 48 inches

The artist had mastered a realistic depiction of a turbulent sea with waves crashing relentlessly against a rocky shore, and, the manipulation of light with a pale setting sun to render form. The effect was sublime and humbling. It read as a homage to nature and to the spiritual affinity which all life has to the grandeur and eternal presence of nature.

End of the Storm, End of the Storm, painted in 1974, is without question a genuine masterpiece exhibiting all the attributes for which Adams is known, and has become one of the most commercially reproduced marine images on the planet. Shortly after it was painted, it was published as a lithograph by Haddad's Fine Art, and has since been available in several sizes on paper, as a canvas print, and as a Giclée. The painting is listed in the Early Masterworks section of the artist's website:

http://www.lorenadams.com/PURPLE/EARLYMAH/EARLY1.HTML

End of Storm was initially purchased from the Gainsborough Gallery in Calgary where Adams had a one-man show from January 26-February 2,1975. The painting was listed as #17 in the exhibition catalogue entitled “An Exhibition and Sale of Recent Paintings by Loren Adams” and was reproduced on the catalogue cover. Colour images of the work can also be found on pages 1 and 23 of a catalogue entitled “Loren D. Adams, Jr.: a retrospective exhibition, January 21-March 4, 1979, the R.W. Norton Art Gallery” produced by the R.W. Norton Art Foundation in Shreveport, Louisiana.

Adams gained international recognition in the early 1970s when it was unfashionable to paint High Realism, especially romantic images of deserted seashores or lone vessels struggling to stay afloat in a torrent of raging sea. Most of his contemporaries were wallowing in the resonating echo of the big-Abstract-Expressionist-bang and were quite comfortably, thank you very much, exploring hard-edge painting, assemblage, site works, performance art and other forms of self indulgence masquerading as art.

Adams' work was initially viewed as Hyper Romantic commercialism akin to those trashy images found on cheap paperback romance fiction, but it has stood the test of at least thirty-five years and has proven itself to be work of significant importance in an age when images are by digital definition, disposable.

In 1984 Adams’ 16 X 20 inch oil on canvas Golden Surface, sold at auction for $4,500. In 1985 a 16 X 20 inch oil on canvas by the same artist sold at auction for $3,750, the year when Tom Thomson's 8 X 10 inch oil on panel, Log Jam, sold at auction for $50,000. Strong secondary market sales of Adams' work, realized over 20 years ago, reflect a continuing appreciation and respect for the artifice of Realism, which in my estimation, will never completely go out of fashion.

Next: The Case of the Shoreline with Vern Simpson

 Fri, Nov 7, 2008