The paintings of Duncan Gleason are noted for their colorful marine atmosphere and fidelity to their subject matter. As a popular illustrator of many books on the sea, Gleason used vivid coloration combined with his strong firsthand knowledge of seafaring to create works that are at once attractive and at the same time realistic in their appeal.
This harbor view appears to be of San Pedro where Gleason made his home in 1924 and where from his hillside residence he commanded an excellent view of Los Angeles Harbor. The work shows the colorful boats moored in the yacht basin. A lone figure is shown in the cockpit of the foreground ketch with a cat boat off her stern and a sloop getting underway beyond the moorings. The mist shrouded hill in the background would appear to be the rise of the Palos Verdes Peninsula.
It was during this period that Gleason developed the specialty of ship painting that would make him unique among his peers. He often was commissioned to create portraits of the private yachts that were based in San Pedro, often owned by stars in the motion picture industry where Gleason worked in the 1930’s and 40’s.
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