Robert Spear Dunning (American, 1829-1905)
Still Life with Fruit
Signed, inscribed, and dated "R.S. Dunning pinxt 1866" l.l.
Oil on canvas, 24 1/2 x 22 in. (62.2 x 55.9 cm), within a frame liner.
Condition: Craquelure, subtle varnish inconsistencies, minor abrasion l.r.
Provenance: Descended within a Southern New England family.
N.B. Robert Spear Dunning, co-founder of the Fall River School of still life painting, was raised in Fall River from the age of five. At the young age of fifteen, he apprenticed with James Roberts in Tiverton, Rhode Island, and at the age of twenty, enrolled in the National Academy of Design where he studied with Daniel Huntington. Upon completing his studies, he returned to Fall River in 1852, where he continued to work and support a thriving art community. By 1865, he narrowed his genre to still lifes, specializing in lush and meticulously detailed arrangements, such as in the present work.