CHARLES FRANCIS BROWNE (American, 1859-1920)

A French Poppy Field Early morning, Auvers sur Oise, 1890
Oil on canvas
Size: 9 x 15 inches
Signed, dated and inscribed lower left: C.F. Browne / France 1890
Artist’s label verso.” a French Poppy Field” Auvers sur Oise V et O [Val d’Oise]– France
(Early Morning) Charles F. Brown, Paris.

Provenance: The Jean and Graham Devoe Williford Charitable trust.
Heritage Auction House, lot #70010, May 10, 2014.
ArtGiverny Private Collection, California

Condition Report: light surface grime; faint craquelure throughout; under UV exam, there appears to be scattered minor crack-fill inpainting throughout sky.

Charles Francis Browne

Born in Natick, Massachusetts, Charles Francis Browne rejected the mercantile career his father had planned for him. As a youth, he worked in a firm of lithographic printers, beginning his art studies in night classes at the school of the Boston Museum of Fine Arts in 1882. Three years later, he enrolled in the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts to work under realist painter Thomas Eakins. He then went to Paris to study with renowned figural painter Jean-Léon Gérôme. Notwithstanding his immersion in academic figural technique, Browne, inspired by sojourns in the French countryside, began painting landscapes in both oils and watercolors. Returning to the U.S. in 1891, he taught briefly at Beloit College in Wisconsin before settling in Chicago.