Everett Shinn Information and Inventory

Everett Shinn

(1876 - 1953)

Everett Shinn


Brilliant, unconventional, complicated, eccentric: all adjectives accurately describe the diversely talented, youngest member of “The Eight” or “The Ash Can School,” as they have come to be known. Their rise as street-savvy newspaper illustrators for the Philadelphia Press at the turn of the century is the stuff of legends. Arguably the most talented of the group, Shinn soon shared quarters with George Luks, and the pair began attending night classes taught by Robert Henri at the P.A.F.A., where they met fellow reporters William Glackens and John Sloan. Between 1897 and 1904, all had departed Philadelphia and relocated to New York City. Shinn’s newspaper training taught him great speed and spontaneity in capturing an image, plus an extraordinary memory for detail. During his career Shinn illustrated twenty-eight books and ninety-six magazine articles. From this body of work came the first two examples in the collection that my father obtained: Scrooge, from Ken Lux, and later the same year (1967), the elaborately drawn Toy Shop, which I believe is also from A Christmas Carol, and was acquired at auction. Although Shinn did produce many paintings and pastels depicting the gritty, coarse street scenes “The Eight” were known for, he was strongly attracted, even while in Philadelphia, to the theatre, the stage, and “cast covetous glances toward upper Fifth Avenue, and frankly opined that the uptown life was more glittering and more good-looking.”1 Probably no American artist captured the spirit of the stage, heat of the footlights, even the sense of the orchestra pit down front, and excitement of the audience better than Shinn. Simply put, he lived it, and even acted on stage whenever he could. In fact, by the time “The Eight” held their first exhibition at Macbeth Gallery in 1908, Shinn’s pieces exhibited at the show were almost exclusively theatre images. The third example in the collection is a quintessential Shinn dancing girl, with all the color, movement, and excitement for which he is so admired. Again, my father’s eye was uncanny, as he acquired this very appealing work from Ken Lux in the early 1970s.

Everett Shinn Gallery

No paintings by this author