|Herb Kornfeld "Boats" Oil on board|
When we asked readers to submit artworks to ART FIND, we got a great entry from Carpinteria, California resident and Coastal View News publisher Michael VanStry. As an art appraiser, I have special interest in mid-century paintings done in Santa Barbara and the Central Coast. When I saw Mr. VanStry’s painting by California artist Herb Kornfeld, it was a perfect example of California modernism.
Mr. VanStry acquired the painting approximately five years ago at a silent auction held at the Casa Pacifica Wine & Food Festival in Oxnard, CA. He noticed it right away -- but the opening bid was more than he could afford. After the auction ended Mr. VanStry decided to ask the organizers how much they would take for the unsold painting. He purchased it for $300.
The artist Herbert Kornfeld was born in Great Falls, Montana in 1915. After moving to Los Angeles as a young man, he attended the Chouinard School of Art under the mentorship of artist Palmer Schoppe. Like many artists of the period, Kornfeld traveled to Europe where he was exposed to the modern art movement going on in France, England, and throughout Europe.
Upon returning to California, Kornfeld settled in the Los Angeles area. He often painted the California coast including seascapes, boats, and scenes of everyday life in Monterey, San Luis Obispo, Pismo Beach, Santa Barbara, and elsewhere. Kornfeld also painted in China, Mexico, and throughout the U.S.
Kornfeld's paintings can be found in private and public collections throughout the world. He has exhibited at the Long Beach Museum of Art, The Downey Museum of Art, The U. S. Navy Museum, Charles M. Russell Museum, Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum, and The American Academy of Arts.
The painting, “Boats” by Herb Kornfeld is a quintessential representation of his coastal subjects. With bold use of color and loose, flat brushstrokes -- Kornfeld’s uniquely modernist aesthetic transforms simple boats into geometric, cubist forms. The painting appears in good condition with no signs of damage.
In my appraisal research, I found that a recent auction records for a comparable Kornfeld painting sold for $950. Multiple galleries sell his work, with large paintings selling for as much as $6,300. A growing demand exists for artworks by California modernists -- and the style, technique, and brushwork of Kornfeld’s “Boats” make it a desirable subject for collectors of California modernism.
Fair Market Value is defined as “the price at which the property would change hands between a willing buyer and a willing seller, neither being under any compulsion to by or to sell and both having reasonable knowledge of relevant facts.”
If this painting was to be sold in a gallery, it would likely be priced between $4,000-$5,000.
Please submit your painting, drawing, or sculpture for next month’s The Art Appraiser. Email us a photo and brief description.
Alissa Anderson Campbell is an art appraiser for Anderson Shea Art Appraisals. She specializes in appraising European and American art for insurance, resale value, estate, tax, and charitable donation. Campbell is a member of the Appraisers Association of America (USPAP-compliant). Ph. 805.616.2781/www.andersonshea-artappraisals.com
©2011 Alissa Anderson Campbell, Santa Barbara, California. All Rights Reserved. This is not an appraisal. Authenticity is not guaranteed. This article is for educational purposes only. None of the contents of this article may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means (electronic, mechanic, photocopy, recording, or otherwise) without the prior written permission of Anderson Shea Art Appraisals, and the appraiser’s signature. )