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Live Auction

Summer Fine Art and Antique Auction - Day 1

Sat, Jul 9, 2022 09:00AM EDT
Lot 186

Louis Fuertes Watercolor Painting, Woodpeckers

Estimate: $1,800 - $2,200

Bid Increments

Price Bid Increment
$0 $10
$100 $25
$500 $50
$1,000 $100
$3,000 $200
$5,000 $500
$10,000 $1,000
$20,000 $2,000
$50,000 $5,000
$100,000 $10,000
Louis Agassiz Fuertes (American, 1874-1927) watercolor and gouache on cardstock depicting two Yellow Bellied Sapsuckers perched on the side of a birch tree. The male is depicted in the foreground with the female partially visible in the background. Signed in black "Louis Agassiz Fuertes" lower right. Pencil inscription en verso cardstock reading "17, Yellow Bellied, Male full f?, Female upper". Empire Molding Works, Rochester, New York label and additional identification label, en verso of frame. Housed in a carved wood frame with wood matte and giltwood liner. Sight: 10" H x 6 1/2" W. Framed: 16 3/4" H x 13" W. Provenance: Originally purchased in Rochester, NY. Biography: Born in New York and inspired as a child by John Audubon's Birds of America, Louis Fuertes became a prominent American ornithologist, illustrator, and artist. His bird paintings and sketches were based on studies in nature and details from fresh specimens across America, Mexico, Colombia, Europe, and Africa. Fuertes was educated at Cornell and went on to illustrate numerous books and articles including for National Geographic, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and his three-volume Birds of Massachusetts, and in 1899 he accompanied the Harriman Expedition to Alaska as a biological surveyor. His name is commemorated in two species, including an oriole he helped discover while on a collecting expedition with Frank Chapman, curator of the American Museum of Natural History. Fuertes was killed in a tragic car-train accident at the age of 53. The Wilson Ornithological Society instituted an award in his memory in 1947.


Painting in overall good condition, not glued down. One pinprick area of spotting to male birds head, a couple of pinprick white spotting upper left corner. Overall toning. Frame with minor abrasions.