Two thirds of the Earth is ocean, so as land animals, our lives as humans are framed by the sea. Angel Espoy (Spain and California, 1879-1963) was a sailor and merchant marine and even a ship’s captain, and so knew his subject for this painting well. Not only that, but while a young man in his native Spain, he studied painting with the incomparable Joaquin Sorolla, who knew a thing or two about painting the sea. Espoy’s colorful life included sojourns to Cuba (where he painted furniture) and the Philippines (where his father had tobacco interests), New York and, finally, in 1914, San Francisco, where he went into animation with the Animated Film Corporation. In his spare time, he painted with pals Manuel Valencia, Carl Jonnevold and John Califano. This 30″ x 40″ untitled oil was painted in the 1920’s, so presumably portrays a beach on our Northern California coast.
We made it a 4-1/4″ wide quartersawn white oak frame stained a cool Medieval Oak, with 1/4″ liner in quartersawn white oak gilt with 18 kt gold. The carved profile is a straightforward scoop with a back-beveled back edge (which is not carved, in contrast to the carved cove of the face) and coved back (visible in the image below). At writing, this excellent work is available from California Historical Design.
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