17 April 2013 by Published in: Show Notes No comments yet

Dear Mr.Willis,

I have attached a photo of a painting signed Walt Kuhn in upper right, which belonged to my father. We have reason to believe it was passed down from his paternal side of the family. He never displayed this painting nor had it appraised – he died in 2008. We found the painting among his effects and we think he forgot that he had it.

The painting is on canvas, and it has no signature. There is an old New York gallery label on the reverse of the painting that says “Walt Kuhn, Head of a Young Girl” the painting is 14″x 10″

Can you tell me what it is worth?  NK

walter-kuhn-head-of-a-young-girl

Dear NK,

Thank you for sending this information. Your painting certainly appears to be by the artist Walt Kuhn (1877-1949). There is a lot to say about Walt Kuhn; besides being an American Modernest Master, he was also instrumental in putting together the landmark 1913 Armory Show. Through this show, he was the first to bring Pablo Picasso among others to the US. Kuhn was offered $20,000 during his life for his masterpiece, The White Clown. At the time, it was the most money ever offered for any painting of a living artist. The White Clown currently lives at the National Art Gallery in Washington, DC and would without a doubt set a new record (the current record at auction is: $1.1 million) if it ever went to auction. Kuhn was known for painting circus performers which as a collector is the most desirable subject. It is possible your piece is of a performer However, not being identified, it would not be a good idea to sell it as one.

I would be delighted to handle such a piece at auction. Without seeing it in person, if authentic, the pre-auction estimate of $8, 000-12,000.

Regards,

Martin Willis, Appraiser

James D Julia Auctioneers

827 Main St

Woburn, MA 01801

Jamesdjulia.com

781-460-6800

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