24" x 12" oil on panel
The J. Chein Company began in a New York City loft in 1903. They made small tin prizes for Cracker Jack's and other small toys for five and dime stores. They also built their reputation for larger tin toys and tin banks that are now sought out by toy collectors, myself included.
This painting features a 1950's J. Chein Tin Hoppy Clown. He is a wind-up clown that hops and moves back and forth on his hands. This version can also be found with silver or yellow hands. Another color combination of a purple and green body can be found.
I spent a while searching out this clown, until I was able to acquire this one. He is marvelous. I love his graphics and couldn't wait to paint his stripes and star vest. I love the balance of his red stripes and red hands. When I set up this painting, I wanted all the focus and attention on him. I also wanted to show the playful tension of him trying to balance on top of the blocks.
I look forward to exploring other paintings with him.