Hunter Wood Night Sail

This painting by Hunter Wood (1908 – 1948) was on a stretcher that was too small and caused the canvas to bulge. Over time this tension cracked the paint film. Fungal invasions had occurred along the surface, most noticeably on the right half. They appear as little black specks and are rather noticeable in a work that is predominantly blue. Restoration will address these two issues as well as apply fresh conservation varnish and touch-up the frame. Stay tuned for more. . .

Hunter Wood was born in 1908 in Babylon, Long Island, New York. Sailing and painting were in his blood; his great grandfather, John L. Worden was commander of the Monitor in its battle against the Merrimac in the Civil War, and Hunter’s  father, Worden Wood, was a successful marine painter and sailor who served aboard the Clipper “Yankee” in the Spanish-American War and also in World War I. Worden’s artwork touched the lives of many due to its wide circulation, including paintings on postcards, pen & ink drawings on magazine covers such as Yachting, and some children’s book illustrations. Worden married a silent movie star (one of the Florodora girls), but they divorced in 1911 when Hunter was very young.

After a brief formal education Hunter left school and joined the New York Merchant Marines. He trained aboard a ship called the Newport before earning the rating of coxswain of the Captain’s personal boat. By the time he was 25, Hunter was sailing as quartermaster for several large shipping companies. During this time he also illustrated for several firms: the United States Lines, the French Line, the Macmillian Company, and the former United States Shipping Board. He was also on the staff of The World and The New York Herald in New York and The Boston Herald. He was a member of the 7th Regiment N. Y. N. G, and was known for meticulously making sure the rigging and proportions were accurate in his works. He died in 1948.

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