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A Hollow Carved Black Duck Decoy by the Famed William Harnden Foster (1886 – 1941), Andover, Massachusetts / South Freeport, Maine, circa 1920s +. Foster is known widely for his paintings and illustrations from the “Golden Age” of Illustration. Foster studied with Howard Pyle and was friends with N.C. Wyeth. As was once said, “Nothing, tough, topped his love for hunting, fishing, guns and dogs.” While among sportsmen, he may be most well-know for his publication, New England Grouse Shooting, which he both wrote and illustrated, he was also an avid waterfowler. He built his summer camp in South Freeport in 1908, became friends with L.L. Bean, and illustrated the cover of Bean’s first catalog. Amidst all this, Foster was a decoy carver of considerable skill, making at least 4 duck species of coastal Maine. This Black Duck Decoy represents the Quality of Foster’s work. The Decoy is Hollow Carved, displays Full-Body Carving with pronounced Wing Patterns, Incised Secondaries, Raised Split Tail Primaries, and Incised Tail Feathers. The Head is Dowelled into the Body and can be Placed in Various Positions, or removed. Foster uses Painted Tack Eyes, Bill Separation, and Mandible and Nostril Carving. The Paint is a Worn Original, one speculum shows loss of coloration, with Subtle Coloration enhanced by lightening. Measurements: 17” in length, 7 ¼” in width, and 7” in height, no stand included. A Wonderful New England Black Duck Decoy. (DX784) Click on Photo for larger images. Contact us for additional information. Price $2250 plus shipping
Outstanding Snuggle Head Bluebill Drake Decoy by James “Jim” R. Kelson (1888 – 1968), Mt. Clemens, Michigan, circa Mid – 20th Century. Kelson started carving decoys for his own use early in life and eventually earned his living “hunting, fishing, carving decoys, and building boats”. (See Walsh & Jackson Waterfowl Decoys of Michigan and the Lake St. Clair Region.) Kelson’s decoys are said to have pioneered the Style of Lake St. Clair Decoys, and eventually his work with Ralph Reghi lead to both a more effective decoy form and an extensive production of decoys for market. This Bluebill, which remains unrigged, displays the extensive attention Kelson gave to his ‘low-bodied” decoys, using the Balsa Wood available post-WWII. The Snuggle Head Form and Low-Cut Wide Body Type is accented with a “Molded” Body Form for Primaries and Secondaries which Enhances the Realism of Feather Comb Painting to Embolden the Feather Pattern. Additionally, the Primary Feathers are carved in a Raised Fashion and the Tail Feathers Incised. What is Especially Pronounced in Kelson’s work is the Detail of Bill Carving, with Clear Separation from the Head, Strong Nostril and Mandible carving both on Top and Bottom, and a Nail at the End. The Strong Original Paint is Laid on Thickly and promotes the 3-Diamensional Carving. Measurements: 13” in length, 7 ¼” in width, and 5” in height. No Stand Included. An Outstanding Snuggle Head Bluebill Drake by Jim Kelson. (DX776) Click on Photo for larger images. Contact us for additional information.
An Excellent Example of a Swimming Black Duck Decoy by Gerald C. Robertson (1913 – 1989), Blue Hill, Maine, circa 1940s. Robertson was a painter in Blue Hill and is especially well-know in the decoy world for his Black Duck Decoys. This Decoy displays a Slightly Turned Head in laid into the Body and Accented with Glass Eyes; the Bill shows a clear Delineation from the Head with Nostrils and Nail clearly carved; the Body displays Strong Raised Wing Carving and an Appealing Separation of the Primaries from the Extended Tail; the Overall Presentation is Quite Bold. Added to the Body is Exceptional Original Paint with Elaborate Feathering. As a Working Decoy, there is some wear to the body, a tight age line on one wing, and a minor chip to the tail. Measurements: 19 ½” in length, 6 ½” in width, and 5 ½” in height. A Fine Swimming Black Duck by Bill Hill Carver Gerald Robertson.
(DX785) Click on Photo for larger images. Contact us for additional information.
Price $895 plus shipping
Early Canvasback Drake Decoy by Paul Gibson (1902 – 1985), Havre de Grace, Maryland, circa 1940s. Gibson was a well-known carver from the Havre de Grace School of carving and this decoy came out of a Bushwhack Rig used on the Susquehanna Flats. Jimmy Fry (did some decoy shows with Jimmy in the Late 1980s – Early 1990s) was one of Gibson’s students and his decoys reflected that history. (See Hagan’s Upper Chesapeake Bay Decoys and Their Makers.) This particular decoy displays a Classic Gibson Form, a Strong Original Paint by Gibson and the Typical Gunning Wear, down to the Wood in some places, and Bumps to the Body and Lines to the Neck that these decoys experienced from use on the Flats. A Classic Example of a Susquehanna Flats Decoy by Paul Gibson. Measurements: 15 ½” in total length, 6 ¼” in width, and 7 ½” in height. Specific measurements consistent with McKinney’s work. No Stand Included. Classic Gibson.
(DX777) Click on Photo for larger images. Contact us for additional information.
Price $450 plus shipping
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