Monday, August 22, 2016

Estate Sale Find! Paper art gold finch.

I have been a connoisseur of the second-hand for most of my life, but in the last year or so, I've been hitting the local estate sales pretty hard. And by "local," I mean anything within, oh, up to 50 miles.

Although it's tempting, I am not a wanton "ooh this is neat I must buy it!" type of shopper. I am also not a "this is valuable, I can resell this!" shopper. I look for things I want, for me, usually for my home. That makes my strike:score ratio probably something like 20:1, but I don't mind. It's also an opportunity to look at how other people live. (Don't let anyone tell you that estate salers aren't voyeurs.)

The focus of this site has always been stuff I made, but when I was organizing some photos this weekend, I realized how many pics I had of random/recent estate sale finds, and decided it would be fun to start sharing them. So here's the first one.

Estate Sale Find: Gold Finch

This is a closeup of an amazing little piece of art I got at an estate that had a good 6 or 8 of these life-size, cut/layered paper birds. There were blue jays, cardinals, and the big one, three cockatoos—again, life size! I gravitated to the gold finch because of the (middling) size of the piece and the contrasting black background.

In pencil on the back of the piece was written, "Gold Finch, Basil Ede." Great, for once I have the name of the artist!

Or so I thought.

When I got home, I looked up Basil Ede. Turns out, he is the originator of the illustration that the paper artist then turned into this dimensional piece. So I still don't know who actually made the piece.

It was already framed in a rather ugly finish, I have to say. The wood was that mid-tone that dominated in the late-60s/early-70s, with dark grain... just didn't like it. I had no issue with repainting the frame glossy white, as I didn't think that was altering the art in any way.

And here it is in its place in my living room!

Estate Sale Find: Gold Finch in situ

That's a big ol' steer skull there, which may give you an idea of the size. I had sent my mother a picture of the piece when I got it from the sale, in the original frame and all, and she said, "And what are you going to do with that?" What am I going to do? Put it on the wall! It actually looks really good in the space, the bad lighting of that photo aside.

Maybe some day I'll find out who actually made it.
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