Framing Edgar Payne

When today’s California landscape painters talk about the tradition that inspires them, the name of Edgar Alwin Payne (1883-1947) invariably comes up. We recently had the honor of framing Payne’s 14″ x 14″ gouache titled “Sierra Vastness.” The painting all but designed its own frame, a No. 143.6 CV— 3″ with carved cushion back edge, and carved sight edge chamfer leafed with rose gold that matches the rose under-painting. Trevor made the frame in walnut, and Sam finished it with linseed oil and wax.

Framed Edgar Payne painting

Edgar Payne gouache painting in white mat & gold frameThis was a re-framing job. At right you can see how it came to us.









Framed Edgar Payne paintingI like this quote from Payne’s 1941 book, The Composition of Outdoor Painting: “A painter needs to study, meditate and experiment and practice interminably in order to produce a painting that would have nobility in its concept, variety, rhythm, repetition, unity, balance and harmony in its composition.” The thriving culture of landscape painting our state enjoys today stands in no small part on that belief and the exemplary body of work it produced.

Payne’s reputation earned him the honor of having a lake in his beloved Sierra Nevada named after him. The oil painting below, “Payne Lake,” depicts that spot. Apparently our gouache is also of Payne Lake. A study for the oil, perhaps?

—Tim Holton

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