A 19" x 25" portrait by Plath of her high school classmate and friend Arden Tapley, executed in pastels. Undated, but probably from 1950, the year both of them graduated from Wellesley High School. Arden is wearing her hair in the same style as her graduation photograph and may be wearing the same shirt. Plath's mastery of the craft of portraiture is limited: her anatomy is far from perfect, but her intent to capture the essence of her subject is boldly realized not only in the outer depiction of her hairstyle and nondescript clothing, but more importantly in the intensity of the gaze captured by the artist. The portrait would be remarkable if it contained only her eyes, which look askance with a combination of intensity and vulnerability that seems to perfectly embody the artist herself, perhaps as much as her friend. Arden Tapley's daughter recalled that her mother often spoke of her high school friendship with Sylvia, and that both were rather "shy, sensitive girls who naturally gravitated toward each other." She said that when she first saw the image she immediately recognized it as her mother, and in that sense Plath did capture an essence of her young friend. We have never seen such an artwork by Plath offered on the market; her sketch of Ted Hughes that was done seven years later and sold for $49,000 was a considerably less "finished" work, albeit one that showed a more mature command of style and representation. All of Plath's significant works have long been institutionalized. Once creased near the lower edge, apparently to display the image without showing the hands; small red stamp lower left corner; else fine. Matted and framed to 23-1/4" x 30". A powerful image of a close friend by the noted writer while she was still a high school student. Provenance: the estate of James Sibley Watson, Jr. No Binding. Near Fine.
Undated. 17" x 21". Pastels. Framed. A half-length figure, executed in pastels, and borrowing from Cubism in its perspectives. U...
How to tell if a signature is genuine
Author's signatures can undoubtedly increase the value of a rare book or first edition. The more scarce the book is, the more an autograph adds to its value. But how to tell if the signature is real? Find out how you can avoid common pitfalls in identifying an author's signature.
Bob Dylan - 2016 Winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature
From the first screech of his electric guitar upsetting musicians at a folk festival to his writing and paintings, Bob Dylan has risen to become a seminal force in American popular culture. In 2016, he was recognized by the Nobel Committee. Learn more about his creations...
Make an Offer
Special order items
A special order item has limited availability and the seller may source this title from another supplier. In this event, there may be a slight delay in shipping and possible variation in description. Our 30-Day return guarantee still applies.
Since 2005, Biblio has donated over $1 million to fund literacy and educational projects that benefit children in impoverished communities of South America. Through BiblioWorks, a 501(c)3 non-profit, we have built 12 community libraries, trained hundreds of teachers and librarians and changed the lives of tens of thousands of underprivileged children.
Every time you purchase a book on Biblio, you are supporting our mission of improving literacy and education at home and abroad. And, if you want to give a little more, be sure to choose to "Round up for Reading" when making your purchase, which will allow you to round up your purchase by a small amount - all of which will go directly to BiblioWorks. To learn about BiblioWorks and to find out more ways you can help promote literacy and education abroad, click here.
Thank you for helping Biblio spread the joys of reading and learning to those in need!