Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Still in Howard Pyle’s Studio

Olive Rush and Ethel Pennewill Brown in Howard Pyle’s Studio in 1911 or 1912 (Blanche C. Grant, photographer)

I was looking for this picture in connection with my last post, but couldn’t find it at first since it’s not in the Olive Rush Papers, but in the Miscellaneous Photograph Collection at the Archives of American Art. It’s described there as “Olive Rush (at left) c. 1908” by an unidentified photographer. But the woman on the right is definitely Ethel Pennewill Brown and the photographer is Blanche C. Grant - her head and shoulder are reflected in the mirror as she stoops over the unseen camera. Grant took the picture when she was sharing Howard Pyle’s Wilmington studio with Brown and Rush in 1911 and possibly part of 1912.

The setting is the small anteroom through which one would pass after coming in the front door and before entering the studio proper. On the right is a “Rare Old Tyrolean Cabinet, carved Italian walnut, fitted with pewter basin and fount” that was Lot 161 in the auction of Pyle’s estate in June 1912. (It went for for $185.) And in the mirror is Pyle’s original pen and ink drawing, “Sir Kay showeth the mystic Sword unto Sir Ector,” from The Story of King Arthur.

“Sir Kay showeth the mystic Sword unto Sir Ector” by Howard Pyle (1902)

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