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 Reuben Le Grande Johnston  (1851 - 1918)

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Lived/Active: New York/District Of Columbia/Maryland      Known for: landscapes with animal, portrait, genre

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Ad Code: 3
Reuben Le Grande Johnston
from Auction House Records.
An Arab Piazza
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
The following, submitted April 2004, is from Kristine M, a collector of work by the artist.

While researching a Reuben Le Grande Johnston painting that I own,an antiques dealer in Syracuse, New York had this to say: " ...this may very well be the work of Reuben leGrande Johnston, an American Artist that lived from 1850 (born in Alexandria, Virginia) to 1918 (died in Riverdale, Maryland).  He was a member of Washington Society and a world traveler who studied art in France and Spain."

The painting that I have? I have an original watercolor signed by Reuben
L. Johnston.  It is approximately 13"x18" (matted) and in the original wood and plaster (?) frame, which is very ornate and gold in color (gilded?), 25"x31 1/2".  The painting is of a pasture with small trees and rocks.  In the foreground is a brown and white cow reclining.  In the background are a brown and white cow and a black and white cow, both standing.  There is also a worn footpath.

On the back of the frame is a partial label, on which is printed: "Albert Roullier, Importer of Rare Engravings and Etchings, Artist's Drawings, Fine Picture Framing and a Chicago address. There is also the number 5967. Handwritten is "Resting, Original Watercolor". A scrap of newspaper stuck to the back bears the date July 26, 1933.

I do know that the painting came from the family home of a wealthy industrialist (late 1800's-early 1900's) in Seneca Falls, New York, birthplace of Women's Rights and where there are many such pasture scenes.
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Reuben Le Grande Johnston was a painter whose signature work was landscapes with animals.  He lived in both New York City and Washington DC where he taught at the Art Students League of Washington DC.  He was primarily self taught, although he did take some classes in Baltimore from Adalbert Volck.  traveled widely including to Morocco, France, Spain, England, and Tangiers and was a member of the Society of Washington Artists.

Exhibition venues include the Corcoran Gallery, the National Academy of Design, and the Royal Academy of London.

Source:
Peter Hastings Falk (editor), Who Was Who in American Art

His wife, Virginia Del Castillo (Mary Johnston), was also an artist.

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Reuben LeGrand Johnston 

b. 26 Jul 1851 in Alexandria, VA
d. 17 Jun 1918 in Riverdale, MD

Parents:  Reuben Johnston, Esq & Maria LeGrand

Married to Virginia Del Castillo (aka Mary Johnston), also an artist.  They were married 6 Jul 1886 in Beltsville, MD. 

Together they had 5 sons, four of whom survived to adulthood.  I believe he spent time in Normandy, France, Spain and Morocco as a young man, then later traveled and painted in the US West, including some art in the Wyoming Statehouse in Cheyenne.  He was also listed as living in either London or Paris in 1882.  He was known primarily for painting landscapes and livestock (especially sheep) although there are a number of pieces from his time in Morocco.

Source:
Information provided by the artist's great-granddaughter Jeanette Lewis


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