2/20/18 – Back to the calendar for more pick of the week inspiration. February 20th is love your pet day. I searched for my favorite pet which is a black Labrador retriever. My sometimes well behaved black lab Stella, who is two, runs out the front door every morning to happily get the newspaper! I thought my pick this week should cover all bases so I found something that fits. This oil on canvas painting by Pennsylvania artist Ben Austrian just happens to have a cat and a dog. How perfect! Not only was this sold by Pook and Pook at auction in November of 2011, but it also happens to be the highest price ever at auction for an Austrian at $82,950. The record for the artist was broken twice that day when earlier in the day a painting of chicks and a pumpkin sold for $65,180, only to be eclipsed hours later. This came from the home of Lester and Barbara Breininger of Robesonia, Pennsylvania. Lester was not only a successful redware artist but a veracious collector of all things Pennsylvania. Dated 1905 and signed in the lower right corner, this painting also retained the original frame. So whether you are a cat or dog lover, this one has it all.
by: Jamie Shearer