Miami Lost, the Seminole Photographs of Eugene F. Savage
In 1935 buoyed by the success of the sale of his Hall of State Centennial Murals to the state of Texas, deep in the Great Depression the artist Eugene Francis Savage drove from his home in Ossining, New York all the way down Route 1 to Miami, Florida where he studied the Seminole Indians. Eventually his paintings of these people would be the subject of a 1936 exhibition at Ferargil Galleries in New York City. Like many other artistic peculative efforts in the 1930's, aside from the sale of one canvas to the Rhode Island School of Design art museum, it was not much of a financial success and the paintings, except for a few museum shows, were lost in storage until being rediscovered in 2007, when they were sold to the Cummer Museum of Art in Jacksonville, Florida.
Four years later the 2007 rediscovery, the photos, and their original negatives, that Eugene Savage took in Florida on that 1935 trip were found in an old cardboard box in the attic of the artists grandson in Woodbury, CT. They too were purchased by the Cummer Museum. This is the first time these once lost photos have ever appeared in the media. As the great season of art shows beckons collectors and dealers alike to the transaction friendly sunny shores of south Florida, these serve as a reminder of Florida's interesting aesthetic past, one that is only now being rediscovered.