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Stanley Meltzoff

There are fish painters, and then there is Stanley Meltzoff.

Universally regarded as the finest painter of apex saltwater gamefish, Meltzoff was born in Brooklyn during the climactic year of WWI.  He was an early prodigy both in public school and later at City College of New York.  During WWII, he served as a correspondent for The Stars and Stripes army newspaper, sitting alongside such luminaries-to-be as two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Bill Mauldin. After the war, Meltzoff taught briefly at New York's Pratt Institute before mustering the artistic courage to branch out on his own.  After that, he never looked back.

Beginning in the late 1940s as one of Madison Avenues original "Mad Men," Meltzoff's illustration career quickly took off.  His work appeared regularly in books, national magazines, corporate annual reports, and advertising materials.  Among other things, the artist did cover work for National Geographic, Saturday Evening Post, Scientific American, The Atlantic, and many others.  His 64 covers for Scientific American remain a record to this day.

Then in 1960, a commission from Sports Illustrated changed Meltzoff's life.  Always an avid diver and by now a celebrated artist, his series of paintings of striped bass conveyed a heretofore unknown degree of realism.  Thrilled with the rave reviews, SI commissioned more series of gamefish paintings, as did the entire sporting media.  Cover artwork for Field & Stream, Grays Sporting Journal, Sporting Classics, and Sports Afield quickly followed.  By the time of his death, Stanley Meltzoff's artwork had appeared in virtually every major sporting magazine.  His death stilled a brush that will never be equaled.

Today Meltzoff's artwork is sought by museums and collectors around the world.  His paintings are owned by such institutions as the Getty Museum, National Baseball Hall of Fame, National Geographic Society, National World War II Museum, and the Smithsonian Institution's National Gallery.  A recent series of one-man museum exhibitions has just concluded a three-year nationwide run. Of all the fish painters before or since, there has never been an equal to the late great Stanley Meltzoff.

-Mike Rivkin

 

2017 Lots

Lot 269
(2017)
Stanley Meltzoff (1917–2006)
Swordfish 3 (1988)
oil on board
31 x 47 1/2 in
$40,000–$60,000
Lot 268
(2017)
Stanley Meltzoff (1917–2006)
Wahoo 4 ()
oil on board
32 x 32 in
$25,000–$45,000
Lot 271
(2017)
Stanley Meltzoff (1917–2006)
Striped Marlin 11 (2001)
oil on board
8 3/8 x 12 in
$5,000–$7,000
Lot 270
(2017)
Stanley Meltzoff (1917–2006)
Black Marlin 11 (2001)
oil on board
9 x 15 in
$8,000–$10,000
Lot 273
(2017)
Stanley Meltzoff (1917–2006)
Bluefin 37 (2006)
oil on board
21 1/2 x 25 1/2 in
$25,000–$45,000
Lot 272
(2017)
Stanley Meltzoff (1917–2006)
Striped Marlin 12 (2004)
oil on canvas mounted on board
20 1/2 x 37 1/2 in
$25,000–$35,000