Monday, November 10, 2014


Catching the drama of news events with speed and accuracy, Everett Shinn began his career as an artist-reporter for a Philadelphia newspaper in the early 1890s. Born in Woodstown, New Jersey, Shinn became a successful illustrator and one of the new realist painters who, at the turn of the century, looked to the modern urban world for their subjects.
In Philadelphia, he worked as a reporter and took classes at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts from 1893 to 1897. At the same time, he met other newspaper illustrators, including William Glackens, George Luks, and John Sloan, who shared his interest in portraying contemporary life. Inspired by fellow artist and teacher Robert Henri, who asserted that anything could be the subject of a painting, the group eventually moved to New York and began to paint scenes of the city. These illustrators-turned-artists, joined by others, were known as The Eight. Their realistic paintings, which often focused on the seamier aspects of city life, challenged traditional academic art, and the group became known as the Ashcan School.

 Menconi + Schoelkopf:

Everett Shinn
Green Park, London, 1908
Pastel on paper
7 x 13 inches
Signed lower right: Everett Shinn

Green Park, London, was completed at the apex of the Ash Can moment, in 1908. Its subject matter, however, was culled from his earlier trip abroad. While he exhibited a work in 1901 at Boussod, Valadon (Green Park, (London), catalogue no. 1), he returned to unfinished sketches seven years later to give a fresh look at this fruitful expedition. Shinn produced two such works in 1908, working to a finish from previous sketches. 

The other work

(Green Park, London, 1908, Pennsylvania Academy)

 showed a similar group of idlers looking more disheveled and exhausted.

The present work retains the brilliant color and lurid light that inflected his work directly following the European trip, but in many ways the return to this subject matter is a repudiation of the gaiety of Shinn’s earlier products of the trip. At the height of the influence of The Eight, Shinn was returning his focus to the downtrodden, revising some of his other reminiscences of Europe to include not just the glamorous, but also the indigent. Throughout his career—which countenanced the Great Depression and two world wars—he would go deeper into the bleak description of poverty, but here he powerfully depicts the scene with the frankness and vitality that propelled the Ash Can school to success.

  Everett Shinn
Outdoor Stage, Paris, c. 1902
Pastel on board
11 1/2 x 13 1/4 inches
Signed at upper left: E. Shinn

Outdoor Stage, Paris, came during or just on the heels of Shinn’s first trip abroad. The lessons are in full evidence: the radiant light and vibrant line, the careful balance of electric blues and greens against rich black and white highlights. The composition brings together his earlier scenes of streets and parks with the high-drama lighting of the stage. Shinn would return to the stage for subject matter, in oil and in pastel, throughout his career, but this early expression of his mature form shows the artist’s mastery at an early age.

Christie's November 19, 2014

EVERETT SHINN (1876-1953)


ESTIMATE $15,000 – $25,000

Christie's October, 2013



  •   Estimate $3,000 - $5,000 Price Realized 1,375

Christie's  5 December 2013

  • EVERETT SHINN (1876-1953)


Estimate $50,000 - $70,000 Price Realized $56,250

Christie's 2009

EVERETT SHINN (1876-1953)


Estimate $4,000 - $6,000 Price Realized $3,750  



 Christies 2008






More christie's

Snowstorm Broadway 

Girl on Stage 


Curtain Call 

The Bright Shawl 

Sotheby’s May 2011

Sold for US$ 3,750 inc.premium

Sotheby’s Nov 9 2012


Estimate 300,000 — 500,00

Sotheby’s May 17 2012

Estimate   60,000 — 80,000
Lot Sold   53,125

Sotheby’s Oct 2 2011

LOT SOLD. 5,000

1876 - 1953

Lot Sold 122,500

Sotheby’s May 2007

Estimate100,000 — 150,000
LOT SOLD. 240,000


LOT SOLD. 14,400 

Swann 2008

  • EVERETT SHINN (American, 1876-1953) 
    Woman Putting on a Slip.
    Estimate $1,500 - $2,500
    Price Realized (with Buyer's Premium) $4,080

Swann 2003

    Trinity Church
    Estimate $1,000 - $1,500
    Price Realized (with Buyer's Premium) $2,530

Swann 2002

    Estimate $3,000 - $5,000
    Price Realized (with Buyer's Premium) $2,990

Skinner 2014

Everett Shinn (American, 1876-1953) Paris Theatre

Sold for: 

Skinner 2005

Everett Shinn (American, 1876-1953) 

Waiting in a Queue

Sold for: 

Questroyal Fine Art

Everett Shinn (1876–1953)

Shinn’s work as a magazine illustrator formed an artistic foundation based in early American Realism, which later absorbed the compositional arrangements of Degas. As a member of “The Eight” and an Ashcan artist, Shinn’s depictions of parks and theater life captured the urban reality that characterized turn of the century New York City.

By Chelsea DeLay

Everett Shinn was born in 1876 in Woodstown, New Jersey. At fourteen-years-old, Shinn left Woodstown and moved to Philadelphia, where he enrolled at the Spring Garden Institute to study mechanical drawing.[1] Two years later, in 1892, he began to work as a draftsman at Thackery Gas Fixture Works, but after less than a year was fired for doodling on his design plans. In parting advice, his boss instructed, “Get out and do the thing you do best… Newspaper, magazine, I would suggest,” leading Shinn in the direction of newspaper illustration.[2]

The Philadelphia Press was eager to hire a talented individual such as the eighteen-year-old Everett Shinn, who demonstrated remarkable talent for a young man with little formal training. Shinn moved from newspaper to newspaper, following wherever an increase in pay led him, developing his skills as an illustrator. Working at several publications allowed for Shinn to cross paths with the likes of George Luks and William Glackens, who similarly shared his distaste for the formalism in American Impressionism that ignored the overwhelming urban development occurring in the last decade of the nineteenth century.[3]

In the 1890s, there was a clear disconnect existing between then-current American life and its portrayal in art; newspapers and magazines were a haven for artists that sought to capture the convergence of cultures and social classes. In the spring of 1893, Shinn, along with fellow Pennsylvania illustrators Glackens, Luks, John Sloan, and Edward Davies, began to attend weekly meetings at the studio of Robert Henri, an artist who encouraged a new form of realism that preached lessons of urbanity. These meetings resulted in what became known as the Charcoal Club, a short lived organization that introduced a group of men who would go on to become known as “The Eight.”[4]

When the Charcoal Club disbanded in the fall of 1893, Shinn acquiesced to the lure of academic training and enrolled in the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. While the classes that Shinn took helped to hone his raw illustrative talent, the overall span of his career seems to revert to his roots in publication: “He retained the swift execution required of an illustrator-reporter and continued to work largely from memory.”[5] In 1897, Shinn accepted a position from the New York World, and subsequently moved to the city with his new wife, Florence Scovel.

Accepting a job at the New York World permitted Shinn to re-join the ranks of Glackens and Luks, who were already employed at the same publication. Entranced by the energy of New York City, Shinn’s primary focus shifted to street scenes and metropolitan life around 1899. Part of Shinn’s initial success as an artist can be attributed to his choice of subjects. Through his selection of recognizable areas in Manhattan, Shinn attempted to directly confront his audience with the metropolitan experience which would redefine the twentieth-century American identity. Park Scene (1899, collection of Mrs. James H. Fogelson) and Madison Square, Dewey Arch (1899, private Collection) illustrate Shinn’s adeptness with pastels; the primary use of black and white, with minor accents of color, is characteristic in his early works.

Shinn’s career began to take off at the dawn of the new century: In 1900, he had his first solo exhibition at Boussad, Valadon & Co., and of the forty-four pastels exhibited, thirty were sold.[6] Shortly thereafter, Shinn and his wife took their first trip abroad, traveling to London and Paris. The most significant consequence of this trip was the profound influence of Edward Degas on Shinn’s work. Degas’s cropped compositions, use of oblique angles, and attention to the audience were all stylistic elements absorbed by Shinn.[7] A common interest in the spectatorship of stage performance was another aspect Shinn gleaned from Degas, even after his return to New York City.

Despite their differences, 1908 was a prolific year for the small group of men who had remained close since their Charcoal Club days. Disgruntled by the Academy’s reoccurring rejection of their works, Henri, Sloan, Glackens, Luks, Shinn, Lawson, Arthur B. Davies, and Maurice Prendergast decided to take matters into their own hands and held The Exhibition of the Eight at Macbeth Gallery.[8]

Members of “The Eight” were united by their realistic approach to subject matter, not by their style.[9] Theater life clearly became Shinn’s primary focus after his brief European sojourn; consequently, his color palette began to brighten in order to accommodate the vibrant hues seen in costumes and set backdrops. Shinn’s ability to balance realism with his personal flair for drama was one of the standout characteristics that differentiated his works from his peers. Girl in Red on Stage (1905, Private Collection) is an example of Shinn’s earlier penchant for incorporating the audience into his spectator experience, while London Music Hall (1918, Metropolitan Museum of Art) exhibits his later tendency to crop his compositions and focus solely on the performers.[10]

Shinn continued to work throughout the duration of his life. His works from the 1930s tended to feature circus figures, and more specifically aerialists and clowns in the 1940s.[11] In 1953, Shinn passed away from lung cancer in at New York Hospital. 

Everett Shinn (1876–1953)
Paris Street Scene, 1905
Oil on board
3 9/16 x 4⅜ inches
On verso: 1905 / Blvd Montparnasse / [illegible] Café a [illegible] / E. SHINN / 1905

Everett Shinn (1876–1953)
Paris Square, Winter, 1940
Pastel on artist’s board
14 x 19 3/16 inches (sight size)
Signed and dated lower right: EVERETT SHINN / 1940 

Everett Shinn (1876–1953)
Paris Square, Winter, 1940
Pastel on artist’s board
14 x 19 3/16 inches (sight size)

Signed and dated lower right: EVERETT SHINN / 1940

Everett Shinn (1876–1953)
The Ventriloquist, 1927
Oil on canvas
36¼ x 29¼ inches
Signed and dated lower right: EVERETT SHINN / ―1927