Rolph Scarlett  (American, 1891-1984) 

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Rolph Scarlett (American, 1891–1984) was an Abstract artist best known for his geometric, abstract paintings, and avant-garde jewelry. Born in Ontario, Canada, Scarlett learned to paint from his grandmother’s instruction and his studies at the Art Sudents League. While he was working for his uncle’s jewelry business, Scarlett became interested in Modern and Abstract Art during a visit to New York in 1913, when he saw the work of Wassily Kandinsky (Russian, 1866–1944) at The Armory Show. In 1923, while traveling on business, Scarlett met the painter Paul Klee (Swiss, 1879–1940), who encouraged him to try executing abstract drawings. While Scarlett was working on his geometric abstractions, he was a set designer for the Pasadena Playhouse while living in California from 1928 to 1936. When he moved back to New York, he designed sets for productions such as the Rockettes at Radio City Music Hall, and worked as an industrial designer during the 1930s. His later work focuses on silver jewelry and drip paintings similar to those of Jackson Pollock (American, 1912–1956). Scarlett rarely signed or dated his paintings. His work is held in several public collections, including the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, NY, the Museum of Modern Art in New York, and the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, D.C.

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Artworks for sale (19)
In Art Galleries (19)
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Rolph Scarlett, Untitled Abstraction

 

Rolph Scarlett
Untitled Abstraction
circa 1940

F.B. Horowitz Fine Art, Ltd.
Rolph Scarlett, Untitled Abstraction

 

Rolph Scarlett
Untitled Abstraction
circa 1940

F.B. Horowitz Fine Art, Ltd.
Rolph Scarlett, Motley

 

Rolph Scarlett
Motley
1947

Gallart.com
Rolph Scarlett, Bang-Up

 

Rolph Scarlett
Bang-Up
Gallart.com
Rolph Scarlett, Untitled (Black Circle)

 

Rolph Scarlett
Untitled (Black Circle)
Portico New York, Inc.
Rolph Scarlett, Untitled

 

Rolph Scarlett
Untitled
Portico New York, Inc.
Rolph Scarlett, Untitled (Pink Form with Stipple Background)

 

Rolph Scarlett
Untitled (Pink Form with Stipple Background)
Portico New York, Inc.
Rolph Scarlett, Untitled (pink, white and black drip)

 

Rolph Scarlett
Untitled (pink, white and black drip)
Portico New York, Inc.
Rolph Scarlett, Untitled (purple and yellow with rockets)

 

Rolph Scarlett
Untitled (purple and yellow with rockets)
Portico New York, Inc.
Past auction results (423)  View All
Rolph Scarlett, Abstract

 

Rolph Scarlett
Abstract
oil on canvas

 

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Rolph Scarlett, A Couple

 

Rolph Scarlett
A Couple
oil on canvas

 

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Rolph Scarlett, Collage

 

Rolph Scarlett
Collage
gouache on paper

 

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1889   Born in Guelph, Canada
1900   Won Guelph Public School certificate of merit in drawing, Guelph, Canada
1901   Began art lessons, Loretto Academy, Guelph, Canada
1924   Moved to New York, NY
1907 - 1936   Theater Designer, Hollywood, CA
1938   Recipient, Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship
1940   Chief Lecturer, Guggenheim Museum of Art, New York, NY
1955   Moved to the artist's colony in Woodstock, NY
1952 - 1958   Taught painting at the Edgewater artist's colony, Edgewater, FL
1965   Became an American citizen
1984   Died in Kingston, NY
2009   Rolph Scarlett (1889-1984): A Canadian-American Abstractionist, Spanierman Gallery, New York, NY (solo)
2007   Alan Davie (1920 - ) Mystic Visions, Rolph Scarlett (1889-1984) Abstract Interludes, ACA Galleries, New York, NY
2006   Rolph Scarlett: Painter, Designer, Jeweller, Embassy of Canada, Prince Takamado Gallery,
2005   Rolph Scarlett Paintings and Works on Paper, The Saint Joseph College Art Gallery. New York, NY (solo)
An important collection of paintings, watercolours, and gouaches by Rolph Scarlett, La Parete Gallery, Toronto, Canada (solo)
Art of Tomorrow: Hilla Rebay and Solomon Guggenheim, Guggenheim Museum of Art, New York, NY; St. Joseph Art Gallery, West Hartford, CT
2004   Rolph Scarlett, Roshkowska Galleries, Windham, NY (solo)
Breaking Boundaries: American Abstract Art, 1930 - 1945, Michael Rosenfeld Gallery, New York, NY
1930s: Modern American Art & Design, Michael Rosenfeld Gallery, New York, NY
2003   Rolph Scarlett: Art, Design and Jewelry, Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, Montreal, Quebec (solo)
Rudolph Bauer, Hilla Rebay, Rolph Scarlett and the Museum of Non-Objective Painting, Gary Snyder Fine Art, New York, NY
2002   Rolph Scarlett: Abstract Expressionist Works from the 1940s and 1950s, Fletcher Gallery, Woodstock, NY (solo)
Art for the New Collector, Spanierman Gallery, New York, NY
2001   Abstract Expressionism: Expanding the Canons, Snyder Fine Art, New York, NY
Rolph Scarlett: Art, Design and Jewelry, The Macdonald Steward Art Center, Guelph, Canada; Kelowna Art Gallery, Kelowna, British Columbia (solo)
2000   The American Century, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY
1988   Washburn Gallery, New York, NY
1987   The Ebsworth Collection: American Modernism 1911-1947, Saint Louis Art Museum, St. Louis, MO
1982   Rolph Scarlett: Works on Paper from c. 1940, Washburn Gallery, New York, NY (solo)
1981   Zabriskie Gallery, New York, NY
1977   University of Guelph Art Gallery, Guelph, Canada
1973   Rolph Scarlett, The Jacques Seligmann Gallery, New York, NY (solo)
1950   Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY
1949   Réalités Nouvelles, Paris, France
1947   Galerie Charpentier, Paris, France
1946   Réalités Nouvelles, Paris, France
1940   Art of the Modern Age Gallery, New York, NY
Galerie Charpentier, Paris, France
Réalités Nouvelles, Paris, France
Museum of Non-Objective Painting, New York, NY
1930   Hegemeyer Studios, Pasadena, CA (solo)
1927   Ninth Annual Exhibition, Toledo Federation of Art Societies, The Toledo Museum of Art, Toledo, OH
Columbia House, Toledo, OH (solo)
1926   Eighth Annual Exhibition, Toledo Federation of Art Societies, The Toledo Museum of Art, Toledo, OH
  Amon Carter Museum, Fort Worth, TX
  Brooklyn Museum of Art, Brooklyn, NY
  Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh/Carnegie Institute, Pittsburgh, PA
  Farnsworth Art Museum, Rockland, ME
  Jane Voorhees Zimmerli Art Museum, New Brunswick, NJ
  Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles, CA
  Macdonald Stewart Art Centre, Guelph, Canada
  Montréal Museum of Fine Arts, Montréal, Canada
  Sheldon Memorial Art Gallery, Lincoln, NE
  Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, D.C.
  The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, NY
  The Cummer Museum of Art, Jacksonville, FL
  The Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY
  Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY
  Woodstock Artists Association, Woodstock, NY
2004    Nasby, Judith. Scarlett, Rolph: Art, Design and Jewelry. Montreal, Quebec: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2004
1993    Rolph Scarlett: Early Master of the Non-Objective. Woodstock: Woodstock Artists Association, 1993 (catalogue)
1988    Rolph Scarlett: A Collection of Prints from the Estate. New York: Associated American Artists, 1988