Offered is an absolutely wonderful, original, 1930s watercolor portrait of a young "Black Shoe Shine Boy", a figure quite reflective of one aspect of African-American cultural history, as the iconic "shoe-shine boy (or man)" was so very frequently seen on city street corners plying a meager living during the first half of the 20th century.
The piece is signed in the lower right hand corner by LISTED American artist, Olga Lea Rosenson, who was born September 10, 1892, in Brooklyn, New York (died 1959). She was best known for her work capturing town and city landscapes as well as portraiture. This portrait intimately captures the soul of its subject as he pensively awaits his next customer, and it is supposed to have been inspired by a young man whom Ms. Rosenson frequently observed on the streets of Brooklyn.
Painted in 1934, the framed piece measures 20" x 26.5"; the watercolor, 13” x 19.5 “. It is completed in various subtle tones of blue, gray, green, and brown, and it is double-matted in cream with a subtle gray under-mat.
This watercolor remained in the same collection for over 60 years and was professionally re-framed by the original owner in 1987, with information on this re-framing taped to the back side of this piece. The wood frame is in very good condition with a couple of small, age-related areas of wear that are minimally noticeable. There is a 5 inch vertical tear to the paper backing as seen in a photo that was taped closed by the earlier owner; there is no damage to the foam-core backing underneath. To the left of this tear, is cut-out information on the artist that was also taped on back by the earlier owner.
Ms Rosenson's works are owned both privately and by museums around the world, including Washington D.C.'s National Gallery of Art.