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Any Given Thursday

“Well, Mr. Rob, it just be’s like that on Thursdays!” Jane and I fell in with an old carpenter named Charlie Lee years ago who would look at us and grin whenever we complimented him on a job well done or questioned him on something we either didn’t like or understand. No matter the day of the week, that certain smile would spread across his face, and we knew what was coming next.

On the first Thursday in March 2009, the gallery received an e-mail and then a call from a collector in Switzerland. This gentleman inquired about a fresh-from-conservation painting by the Swiss artist Frank Buchser that we had just the day before posted to our website. As the conversation progressed, we agreed to hold that painting, and the following Friday evening—missing Thursday by just a little—I picked up our new friend at the airport in Charleston.

By Saturday morning—and without a Thursday in sight—the painting had found a new home, and we had learned an awful lot about the dedication of one connoisseur to the work of one very fine painter.

Though strangers from vastly different parts of the world, this gentleman and I found that we shared a common enthusiasm: he for Buchser (even the non-Swiss subjects), and I for Buchser and the art of the American South. This painting was important to us both and now resides in a small village in the Swiss Alps, hanging in a place of honor in the collector's home. There, a young daughter who never “know this shooting marbles” sometimes reconstructs the scene with her father, using a handful of nineteenth century marbles from my collection. I can picture it well.

Frank Buchser (1828-1890)
Four Black Marble Players (1867)
Oil on linen
25 x 30 inches
Signature Details: Lower right
Owner: Private Collection, Switzerland
1451 River Road · Yemassee, SC 29945 · 843.412.8738
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