Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Dogs Playing Poker, A Friend in Need

A Friend In Need
(dog in the front passing an ace to the next dog  :)

The Coolidge Collection

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Dogs Playing Poker refers collectively to a series of sixteen oil paintings by C. M. Coolidge, commissioned in 1903 by Brown & Bigelow to advertise cigars. All the paintings in the series feature dogs dressing and acting like people, but the nine in which dogs are seated around a card table have become derisively well-known in the United States as examples of mainly working-class taste in home decoration.

The titles in the "Dogs Playing Poker" series proper are:

A Bold Bluff
A Friend in Need
His Station and Four Aces
Pinched with Four Aces
Poker Sympathy
Post Mortem
Sitting up with a Sick Friend
Stranger in Camp

The St. Bernard in the paintings Waterloo and A Bold Bluff was owned by the Fifth Avenue florist Theodore Lang, who counted Coolidge among his friends. The dog's name was Captain.

On February 15, 2005, the originals of A Bold Bluff and Waterloo were auctioned as a pair to an undisclosed buyer for US $590,400.  The previous top price for a Coolidge was $74,000.

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