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Frederick Ferdinand Schafer Painting Catalog

Painting record FFSd0163

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[photo] [Morning on Lake Tahoe 1]
Photo credit: Walter Nelson-Rees, WIM Fine Arts
Date: said to be c. 1880
Medium: oil on canvas
Size: 30 x 50 in (76 x 127 cm)
Inscription: l/r "F. Schafer", in the artist's characteristic block-letter hand, underlined
Provenance: With WIM Fine Arts, Oakland, California, 1980
Reproductions: WIM Fine Arts photo #763 (color)
Citations: Inventory of American Paintings… record 7106A154
Site: Eastern (Nevada) side of Lake Tahoe, looking south across Glenbrook Bay toward Cave Rock (a landmark sacred to the Washoe Indians, and known by them as De'ek Wadapush, or Standing Gray Rock Cave Rock Final Environmental Impact Statement) and beyond toward the mountains surrounding Desolation Valley.
Description: Cave Rock, its top bathed in red by the rising sun, stands prominently at the center left, reflected in a small bay of the blue lake, which occupies the center of the painting. To the left of the rock loom reddish brown cliffs; at its base are sparse stands of dark green conifers. At the lower right of the painting, above a small but steep valley, is a boulder-filled slope topped with four tall, spindly conifers whose upper branches are brightened by the sun. Beyond them on the slope are two smaller conifers, and two standing dead tree trunks; amid the boulders and brush on the slope are trunks of several more fallen trees. A line of pink mountains with white snow-caps runs across the horizon below a blue sky; several hazy ridges below those mountains are visible on the far side of the lake; there are two white sailboats on the far side. The shadows in the painting consistently place the sun off the canvas to the left which must make it a morning scene (see the note concerning a contradictory title under Identification.) (From a color photograph.)
Note: 1. There is a Charles E. Watkins photograph of this scene from virtually the same vantage point, taken between 1880 and 1885. However, the scene in the photograph is different in enough respects to make it unlikely that it was used as a model for the painting. 2. Two paintings with this title were offered as lots 193 and 199 on page 11 in the catalog of a 17 November 1885 auction in San Francisco but there is not enough information in that catalog to either include or exclude the possibility that one of them is this painting. appeared in at least three 19th century auction catalogs but without enough information to either include or exclude the possibility that one of them is this painting. See Paintings known only by title for details.
Identification: Assigned, descriptive title. The Inventory of American Paintings, which uses the apparently incorrect alternate title below, lists as its informants Nelson-Rees and Coran, proprietors of WIM Fine Arts.
Other title(s): Evening on Lake Tahoe, California (Inventory of American Paintings…)
In index(es): Title list, Lake Tahoe and environs

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Mar 10, 2024, 11:47 MDT Accessibility