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Fine Art/Oil on canvas, can't make out the signature


Hello Dan,
  I suspect my 19" wide by 14" tall [actual image dimensions] oil-on-canvas painting to be approx. 90 to 110 years old based on the style and look of the subject and frame. Just an experienced guess by a 32 year antiques dealer. It came from a source that indicates this to be feasible. I am well aware of the fact that an itme is not necessarily 100 years old because it was purchased from an 80 year old person who claims it was their grandfathers, but this piece looks very "right". I can take a digital photo and email to you. The signature starts clearly with an initial W, and then the surname first capital letter is SO sloppy it could be a J, an H or perhaps even a K. It does end with a lower case "y" with a tail that sweeps hard back to the left. It's in black paint in the lower right hand corner of the painting. The scene is of two older gentleman playing carom billiards on a pre-1900 style pool table. There is a small picture in the background showing what appears to be a man dressed in something like a fox-hunt uniform with a dog looking up at him. The frame is 3" wide, quartesawn oak, dished out in the middle, and it hangs on an obviously old, stiff wire. The original paper backing has been removed, but everything honestly looks undisturbed?? My wife and I collected antique billiard and barbershop items for more than 32 years, nationwide, and this is the only genuine vintage "billiard" themed oil painting we ever got the chance to buy. We've had it for approx. 16 years. I'd love to find out who this W so-and-so is. It looks like it could actually VERY sloppily say W Henry?? We've never attempted to discover the painter's identity before. Finally got the urge to know. Hope you can help.

Best Regards,
Mark & Connie Stellinga
319-354-7287   any time  [Iowa]  

Dear Mark & Connie,
If you would like to send jpeg images to me please keep each image of a reasonable size (not too large), and send them as “attachments”, do not imbed them in your email. If you are looking for identification or opinion regarding your painting best would be an image of the front (just the painting, don’t include your lovely living room or pick-up truck), the back, and close-ups of the signature, details of the brush-work, and any inscriptions or labels (use the macro setting on your camera for these close-ups). You can send this information to my email at and make your subject line “allexperts” so I do not bounce you as spam. It would be nice to receive feedback as I do this on my own time with no remuneration, free, no charge, nada. I do not research prints or artwork post-1940.

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Daniel A. Hynes


Collecting, buying, selling, identifying, and caring for paintings, drawings,and watercolors (19th and early 20th century American and European). No prints, contemporary art, or works executed after 1940.


35 years as a fine art dealer, including 3 years as a gallery director. Also was art expert for Leslie Hindman's Auctioneers, and for Dunning's Auction.

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