Tuesday, November 12, 2013

American Folk Art - Asahel Lynde Powers 1813-1843



Asahel Lynde Powers (American painter, 1813-1843) Eliza Ann Farrar

Asahel Lynde Powers was born on February 23, 1813, in Springfield, Vermont, to Asahel Powers II & his wife Sophia L. Lynde & was the oldest of 9 children.

Asahel Lynde Powers (American painter, 1813-1843) Azuba Allen Carpenter, Wife of Dr. Henry Gray

He became an itinerant folk portraitist who traveled across the country from Vermont, to upper New York state, through Ohio & Indiana, to Illinois, leaving portraits in many communities. He began painting commissions at about age 18 & traveled in the Northeast states.

Asahel Lynde Powers (American painter, 1813-1843) Mrs Patrick Henry, Dorothea Dandridge 1826 (This painting at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts confuses me. Asahel L Powers was born on February 23, 1813; which would make him 13, when he painted this, if the date is correct. And, Dorothea Spotswood Dandridge, the 2nd wife of Patrick Henry, was born in 1757, in Hanover County, Virginia, and died in Charlotte County, Virginia in 1831. How would a very young Springfield, Vermont, painter come to paint her portrait? And this painting is on canvas, although it is reported that Powers did not switch from board to canvas, until the 1830s.)

He painted his early, very decorative portraits on wood panels; but by the 1830s, when he was traveling farther, he switched to canvas which was easier to carry. Powers would have only been 20 in 1833.  From 1835 to 1837, Powers entered into a business partnership with a Mr. Rice, probably the bookseller, writer, and publisher Daniel Rice of Springfield. The nature of the partnership is not known, although several portraits from this period are inscribed “Powers & Rice.”

Asahel Lynde Powers (American painter, 1813-1843) Portrait of Albert and Julius 1838 Brothers with a Rattle and a Riding Crop

From 1839-1841, he worked in Clinton & Franklin counties in upstate New York. In New York, he gave art lessons as well as painted portraits. Daniel Folger Bigelow (1823-1910) stated that he received his first art instruction from Powers, to whom he gave credit for his own "delicacy of coloring and treatrment."

Asahel Lynde Powers (American painter, 1813-1843) Hannah Fisher Stedman, 1833

He was painting in Olney, Illinois, where a contingent of his family had settled during the 1840s, when he died in 1843, at the age of 30. At the time, Powers' wife, Elizabeth, was living in Clinton, New York, where she was involved in making an 1844 inventory of his possessions after his death.

Asahel Lynde Powers (American painter, 1813-1843) Louisa Griswold Field



Asahel Lynde Powers (American painter, 1813-1843) Signed Portrait of a Woman of Springfield



Attributed to Asahel Lynde Powers (American painter, 1813-1843) Woman Wearing a Golden Brown Dress and Gold Jewelry.



Asahel Lynde Powers (American painter, 1813-1843) Charles Mortimer French



Asahel Lynde Powers (American painter, 1813-1843) Possibly Mrs. William Sheldon, c. 1831


No comments:

Post a Comment