Untitled (Riders on Horses) Paint on canvas affixed to board Signed 21 3/8" x 16 1/2" Provenance: Collection of Jimmy Hedges
Philanthropist, artist, collector and art dealer James R. Hedges III was born into a prominent Chattanooga family in 1942. He collected and worked with a broad array of artists including rural Southern, African American artists, and self-taught artists, as well as prisoners and artists with mental and physical disabilities. Hedges created his 500-acre Hedges Farms on Lookout Mountain, Georgia, filling his home with works made by his favorite self-taught artists, including Justin McCarthy, Sterling Strauser, Alvin Jarrett, Jon Serl and Mose Tolliver, along with his own carvings. In the early 2000s, Hedges added Rising Fawn Art Gallery to the property, providing himself with a facility in which to hang quilts and large paintings as well as his eclectic collection of Southern folk artists’ works, which he offered for sale. Hedges also created Rising Fawn Folk Art Sculpture Garden in a tree-filled setting adjacent to the gallery. That project became an ongoing work-in-progress featuring more than thirty stone carvings by sculptors including Hubert Walters, Tim Lewis and Charles Simmons. Hedges emerged on the art scene in the early 1990s, driving a vintage blue dump truck loaded with self-taught artists’ works. He built Rising Fawn Gallery’s reputation in the field by taking part in the Outsider Art Fair, New York Intuit’s Collectorama, Chicago and Folk Fest, Atlanta among other events. He was a road warrior who frequently stopped to call on self-taught artists and their families, often bringing them gifts. One could say he never met a folk artist whom he did not enjoy visiting. One could also say he never discarded a receipt or piece of correspondence. He made fact sheets, postcards, and pamphlets to promote his favorite artists and their work, all of which are among his papers, along with sales records and collectors' files. In 2016, two years after his death, Hedge’s treasure trove of more than 2,400 documents generated through his transactions with more than 400 outsider artists was given to the Smithsonian’s Archives of American Art by his son, the art collector James R. Hedges IV, on behalf of the Hedges Descendants Trust. Also included in the gift is Hedges' camera, with which he documented the lives of the many artists he supported, capturing them at ease in familiar surroundings. Jimmy Hedges' records form the basis for the largest database and curatorial research materials in the field. In compiling this documentation, Hedges anticipated the increasing incorporation of the outsider art genre into the mainstream American art world in our time. Artist Purvis Young lived and worked in Overtown when it was still a squalid Miami neighborhood cut off by the highway overpasses that loom over it. He was obsessed by books and hungry for knowledge about art, making up for a lack of formal education with intensive reading and study. It is not surprising that he made books of paintings and painted in books. He also painted on scrap lumber and plywood that he scavenged from the streets and vacant lots of Overton and on the exterior walls of abandoned buildings in his neighborhood. In the visual vocabulary of Purvis Young, city streets pulse with life, wild horses roam, Big Brother looms, ancient warriors battle, musicians improvise wildly. Recent shows include the Rubell Collection’s Thirty Americans in Miami in 2015 and the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s 2018 exhibition History Refused to Die: Highlights from the Souls Grown Deep Foundation Gift. The Rubell Foundation opens its latest exhibition, Purvis Young and New Acquisitions, on December 3, 2018 during Art Basel, Miami
Minor paint chips, lifting of canvas from board Condition reports (given as opinion and not as guaranteed statements of fact) are added online throughout the auction process. The absence of a condition report does not imply that there are no condition issues with the lot. Please call (609) 397-9374 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions about this lot at least 24 hours prior to auction.