Monday, May 4, 2015


I recently received the following email from a reader of this blog:

I have a beautiful large DeVoe painting (watercolor?) of a group of Asian women, some playing instruments. I would like to send you some photos of it. It has beautiful colors in it. I think the artist may be from Chicago, as this used to belong to my great aunt, who lived in Chicago for years. It was given to her sister, who my aunt thought was a friend and the daughter of the artist.

The painting is 34” x 23 1/2” on the inside of the frame. It is behind glass.  I’m told the frame is mahogany.  It is very old, as the back of the frame has really old paper covering it.

All of the M. Devoe paintings I have seen, and featured on this blog are of tropical birds (most common) or flowers.  I have never seen a M. Devoe painting of people, let alone Asian people.  Of course, I wanted to see it and this collector was kind enough to send along these photos:

As you can see, it is completely different from the content and style of the other Devoe paintings I have featured.  

The collector did know something about the Devoe who painted her painting:

DeVoe had two daughters, Myrtle and Lorraine and he made each of them a painting. Lorraine never married and was an educator-school teacher, principal and edited books for the board of education in Chicago. She died at the age of 56 of lymphoma and willed this painting to my aunts sister.  Myrtles husband Rex Schultz was a boss at Crane Company in  Chicago.

This is a beautiful painting, to be sure, but I just don't think it was painted by "our" M. Devoe.  The subject and style are vastly different from the tropical birds and flowers of the other Devoe paintings featured in this blog. Finally there is the signature.  Here is the signature of "our" M. Devoe:

and here is the signature of the "Asian" Devoe:

I told the owner of the painting that I would post it on the blog and get the opinion of the other Devoe collectors out there.

The "Asian" Devoe is in a private collection and the owner would like to sell it.  If anyone is interested, email me at and I will pass your email along to the owner.

When I started this blog back in March of 2014 I wanted to try to track M. Devoe paintings for sale and sold, but also to find out who this M. Devoe was who painted these gorgeous tropical bird and flower paintings.  One of my M. Devoe paintings hangs over my fireplace.  Everyone who sees it is captivated, and the first question is always about the artist. 

I have been able to feature quite a few Devoe paintings on the blog, but unfortunately I am no closer to finding out about the real M. Devoe than I was when I started.

In the meantime, enjoy the "Asian" Devoe painting, and let me know what you think of it.