Lot 17

Thomas Hart Benton "Windmill, Water Trough, and Cow" Graphite (ca. 1951)

Estimate: $2,000 - $3,000
Sold for

Bid Increments

Price Bid Increment
$0 $25
$500 $50
$1,000 $100
$5,000 $250
$10,000 $500
$20,000 $1,000
$50,000 $2,500
$75,000 $5,000
$100,000 $10,000

Thomas Hart Benton

(Missouri, 1889-1975)

Windmill, Watering Trough, and Cow, circa 1951

Graphite on paper

11" x 14"


Benton scholar Dr. Henry Adams: "This was probably sketched during Benton’s western trip of 1951, and while not identical, is similar in subject matter and design to two paintings that Benton executed shortly afterwards: Open Country (1952; The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art), and Windmill and Watertank, West Texas (1953, private collection). In both paintings Benton placed the water tank and windmill far apart from each other, to emphasize the loneliness of the landscape. The sketch has the more jumbled quality of a motif observed directly from life."


Matted to 24" x 18".


Mild wrinkling across the sheet. A small tear is visible 1/2" into the mat window at the bottom left corner. Faint tape stain at the bottom right corner.

Overall Dimensions
Height: 24.00 in
Width: 18.00 in
Depth: 0.50 in

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Acquired by Vincent and Leah Campanella directly from Thomas and Rita Benton over the course of their 25 year friendship. A portion of the collection was given to the Campanellas by Rita in 1975 as compensation for Vincent completing "The Sources of Country Music," the mural left unfinished when Tom passed away in 1975. Vincent Campanella was later prominently featured in the Ken Burns documentary Thomas Hart Benton (1988). In 2001, the Campanella family sold the collection to the current owner, a private Kansas City collector.

Benton scholar and author, Dr. Henry Adams, has authenticated the entire collection in person. You can find his essay documenting the 25 year tumultuous friendship of Vincent and Thomas and the origins of the collection at Circle-Auction.com. A copy of his essay will be provided to all winning bidders.