Charles Basing (1865-1933) [RA 1911-1933] : Moorland, Staten Island, ca.1917.


SAL record control number: 76199 ;

Record level: Item ;

Record type: Movable work ;


Work title: Moorland, Staten Island  [from collection database] ;

Alternate work titles:
2021 : Moorland, Staten Island  [from collection database] ;

Work date: ca.1917  [from collection database] ;

Work creator: Charles Basing (1865-1933) [RA 1911-1933] ;

Work medium: Oil on canvas ;
Work dimensions: 20 x 24 inches [framed] ;

Inscribed / signed front:
Location: Signed at lower right.
Dated?: No.
Text: ‘C. BASING’.


SAL category: Oil ;
SAL sub-category: Landscape ; trees ;

Archives of American Art subjects:
Art — American
Art ― Private collections ― New York (State)
Art ― Private collections ― New York (State) ― Salmagundi
Landscape — Farm
Landscape — Marsh
Landscape ― New York
Landscape ― New York―Staten Island
Landscape — Tree

Description of work:

How serendipitous that the recent celebration of our centennial at 47 Fifth Avenue should bring our way one of the paintings that was auctioned in 1917 to purchase this [Salmagundi townhouse] building.

Charles Basing’s contribution, “Moorland, Staten Island,” is one of only ten known works from the 1917 Special Auction to come up for sale.

Basing, a native Australian, was one of those larger than life characters whose blustery tales of his youth were taken by his fellow Salmagundians “with a grain of salt.” A talented watercolorist, muralist and scenic painter, Basing’s most well known work is the celestial ceiling at Grand Central Terminal at 42nd Street. He also created many sets for Broadway shows, including those for “Peter Pan,” staring Maude Adams.

Keeping in line with his extraordinary personality, Basing’s demise in 1933 was more than a bit unusual. His good friend, G. B. Mitchell explains:

“Before Christmas time, Basing obtained his annuity, crossed the stormy Atlantic to la belle France and in Paris was almost immediately struck down by a taxi cab. Recovering from his injuries many weeks later in some Hotel Dieu, he sailed across the blue Mediterranean to Morocco to paint, as he wrote some of us, “desert scenes and Arab caravans.” Near Marrakech in that North African clime, a camel stepped on his foot, blood poisoning set in and there, on February 3, 1933, Charles Basing, “American painter and architect” (as per a New York Times obituary of the 14th), passed on to the Great Beyond. His going, left no one of our elder members to relate personal tales of pearl diving in the Malay Archipelagos, of being held “taboo” by sea island people and of living in intimate tribal life where even the humblest male had a harem of dusky sirens.”


2019 SCNY, museum purchase fund, accession #[missing never accessioned],
2019 ( Clarke Auction Gallery, Larchmont, NY ) ;
ca.1917 Charles Basing (1865-1933) [RA 1911-1933], the artist .

Exhibition history:
2020 – 2021 SCNY Salmagundi purchase prizes October 30, 2020 – August 31, 2021.
2019 Clarke Auction Gallery, Larchmont, NY, Fine art, jewelry, silver, Asian, antique and Mid Century auction, May 5.

References / citations:
– Clarke Auction Gallery, Larchmont, NY, auction, Fine art, jewelry, silver, Asian, antique and Mid Century auction, May 5, 2019, lot #19, illustrated : color.



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Record birth date:
December 25, 2019

Last updated: October 18, 2021 at 13:44 pm