Australian/American, 1876-1958




Oil on Board

Signed lower left Hayley Lever

Labels verso from Chapellier Galleries, NYC, and New Britain Museum of American Art


Museums: (29) including Metropolitan Museum of Art, Los Angeles County Museum of Art,

High Museum of Art, Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, Yale University Art Gallery,

Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. Cheekwood Museum of Art (& others)


Books: (64) including Hayley Lever by Carol Lowrey


Periodicals: (3) American Art Review; Art & Antiques  


Provenance: New Britain Museum of American Art, New Britain CT



Prior to immigrating to America in 1912, Richard Hayley Lever, worked in England for 18 years, settling in St. Ives,

Cornwall. There he began painting luminous harbor scenes, perfecting that subject matter upon his arrival in America -

as in this extraordinary example. "Sunset on the Bay" again features Lever's strategic placement of pure blacks against

lights and vivid colors, making the waters seem to glisten and dance.  I know few painters who employ this device with

such effectiveness.  The directional brushwork not only builds energy, but depicts the city without painting a single detail

 - save a few lights.


 I find most of Lever's paintings more about the joy of paint, color, light and energy than about the actual subject matter. 

 There is usually a touch of whimsy or play, even in the more serious or misty scenes.  Lever once said: "Art is the

recreation of mind in line, form and color.  If I were confined to my own backyard for the rest of my life, I'd still

have more pictures in my mind than I would have time to paint.  Art is nothing but having a good time".  

This is very evident in "Sunset on the Bay".


Image Size: 6” x 9”










Please Inquire



LEVER, Richard Hayley (1876-1958)


Birth place: Adelaide, South Australia

Death place: Mt. Vernon, NY

Addresses: NYC; Mt. Vernon, NY

Profession: Painter


Studied: Prince Alfred Club, Adelaide; Art Students League; Paris; London.


Exhibited: Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts Annual;, 1913-32, 1940 (medal, 1917; gold medal, 1926);

Corcoran Gallery biennials, 1914-41 (12 times); National Arts Club  1914-15 (prizes); Pan-Pacific Expo,

1915; National Academy of Design, 1914, 1936, 1938 (prizes); NAC, 1914-16, 1922, 1940;

Philadelphia Watercolor Club, 1918 (prize); Sesqui-Centennial Expo, Philadelphia, 1926 (prize); Montclair

 Art Academy, 1930 (prize); New Rochelle Art Academy, 1941 (prize); Art Institute of Chicago; Society

of Independent Artists, 1920; Salons of America , 1934; Whitney Museum of American Art, 1922-46; Newark Art Club,

1936 (prize); Westchester Arts & Crafts, 1945 (prize); Macbeth, Rehn, Ferargil, Daniels, French & Co.,

Clayton, & other NYC galleries.


Member: National Academy of Design; American Painters & Engravers; National Arts Club; Connecticut Academy

of Fine Arts; Royal British Artists, London; Associate National Academy, 1925; National Academician, 1933;

Royal Institute of Oil Painters, London; Royal West of England Academy; Contemporary; New

Society Artists; Woodstock Art Association


Work: Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts; Metropolitan Museum of Art; Brooklyn Museum; Montclair

Art Museum; Boston Museum of Art; Corcoran Gallery of Art; White House, Washington, DC; Ft.

Worth Museum of Art; Dallas Museum of Fine Art; Los Angeles Museum of Art; Telfair Academy; Detroit

Institute of Art; Des Moines Art Museum; Woodstock Art Association; University Nebraska; Phillips Memorial

Gallery; Duquesne Club, Pittsburgh; National Arts Club; Adelaide (So. Australia) Art Museum; Sydney

(Australia) Art Museum; Whitney Museum of American Art; Syracuse Museum FA; Antioch College; City Art Museum

of St. Louis; Memphis Art Museum; Springville (Utah) Art Academy; Perth Amboy (NJ) Public Library;

Little Rock Art Museum; Salt Lake City University Museum; Lincoln (NE) University


Comments: Best known as a Post-Impressionist of marine scenes, he was active in St. Ives, England, beginning c.1895.

In 1911, Ernest Lawson persuaded him to emigrate to the U.S. After the Depression forced him to give up his

home in Caldwell, NJ, he became director of the Studio Art Club, in Mt. Vernon, NY. He spent his summers at

Gloucester, MA, for twenty years. In addition to Caldwell, NJ, he painted in Manasquan (NJ), Woodstock (NY),

 Nantucket, Vermont, and Monhegan Island (ME). In later years his palette became more vibrant.

Signature note: His signature was typically bold and slashing during the 1910s-20s, while his later signatures have fewer flourishes.


Sources: WW53; WW47; Curtis, Curtis, and Lieberman, 32, 184; Woodstock AA; Falk, Exh. Record Series.

This biography is drawn from “Who Was Who in American Art” , the reference book on the cultural life in the United States.



Museums Include :


Addison Gallery of American Art

Art Gallery of South Australia

Butler Institute of American Art

Cheekwood Museum of Art & Botanical Garden

Colby College Museum of Art

Corcoran Gallery of Art

Everson Museum Of Art

Flint Museum of Art

Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, MH De Young

Heckscher Museum

High Museum of Art

Los Angeles County Museum of Art

Museum of Art at Brigham Young University

Museum of the City of New York

Neuberger Museum of Art

New Jersey State Museum

Norton Museum of Art

Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts

Sheldon Memorial Art Gallery

Spencer Museum of Art

Telfair Museum of Art

The Baltimore Museum of Art

The Brooklyn Museum of Art

The Corcoran Gallery of Art

The Detroit Institute of Arts

The Hudson River Museum

The Metropolitan Museum of Art

The Montclair Art Museum

The Phillips Collection

Yale University Art Gallery


Books include :


Spanierman Gallery, Fine American Art from 1845 to 1960 

Spanierman Gallery, Art for the New Collector II, Re-Emerging American Artists

Lowrey, Carol, Hayley Lever 

Spanierman Gallery, Art for the New Collector 1840-2001

Steiner, Raymond J, The Art Students League of New York - A History (Teachers)

  Caldwell, Joseph S III & IV, Select Works: Fine American and European Paintings

Vose Galleries, Vose Art Notes - Art Collecting in America/A Timeline

Hopps, Walter (others) American Images/The SBC Collection of 20th Century American Art

Curtis, Jane/Will, F Lieberman, Monhegan - The Artists' Island

High Museum of Art, American Paintings at the High Museum of Art

Fresella-Lee, Nancy, The American Paintings (in the) Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art

Geske, Norman/Karen Janovy, The American Painting Collection - The Sheldon Memorial Art Gallery

Preato, Robert/Sandra Langer, Impressionism & Post-Impressionism - Transformations 1885-1945

Berry-Hill Galleries, American Impressionist Paintings (Taylor Gallery exhibition, London)

Kennedy Galleries, Insights and Outlooks - American 20th Century Watercolors & Drawings

Brooklyn Museum, American Watercolors, Pastels, Collages/ Brooklyn Museum

Rodriguez Roque, Oswaldo, Directions in American Painting1875-1925

Maurice Sternberg, Galleries, The American Perspective 

Brooklyn Museum, American Paintings/Brooklyn

Montclair Art Museum, The American Painting Collection of the Montclair Art Museum

Chambers, Bruce W, American Paintings in the High Museum of Art/Bicentenial Catalogue

Graham, F Lanier, Three Centuries...American Painting M H deYoung and Palace of Legion of Honor

Chapellier Galleries, American Art Selections - Turn of the Century

Everson Museum of Art, American Painting from 1830

Neuhaus, Eugene, The History and Ideals of American Art

Bryant, Lorinda Munson, American Pictures & their Painters


Also See :




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Richard Hayley Lever, Sunset on the Bay, Oil on Board