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Portrait of Dr. Frederick A. Cook by Albert Operti
Portrait of Dr. Frederick A. Cook by Albert Operti
Portrait of Dr. Frederick A. Cook by Albert Operti
Portrait of Dr. Frederick A. Cook by Albert Operti
Portrait of Dr. Frederick A. Cook by Albert Operti
Portrait of Dr. Frederick A. Cook by Albert Operti
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Portrait of Dr. Frederick A. Cook by Albert Operti

  • This handsome portrait of explorer and physician Dr. Frederick Cook is the work of Albert Operti
  • Cook is depicted studying a native bird dressed in traditional polar attire
  • The works of Operti seldom become available for acquisition, most are held in private collections
  • This particular work was featured and discussed in the Cook Society journal, Polar Priorities
  • Get complete item description here
$88,500
Item No. 31-7460

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Description
Albert Ludwig Operti
1852-1927 | Italian-American

Portrait of Dr. Frederick Albert Cook

Oil on canvas

This highly rare portrait of the important Polar explorer, Dr. Frederick Albert Cook, is the work of American artist Albert Ludwig Operti. Renowned in the late 19th and early 20th centuries for his paintings of exploration, namely Arctic scenes, Operti was the only artist to accompany Robert Peary on his historic 1896 expedition to the North Pole.. . .
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Albert Ludwig Operti
1852-1927 | Italian-American

Portrait of Dr. Frederick Albert Cook

Oil on canvas

This highly rare portrait of the important Polar explorer, Dr. Frederick Albert Cook, is the work of American artist Albert Ludwig Operti. Renowned in the late 19th and early 20th centuries for his paintings of exploration, namely Arctic scenes, Operti was the only artist to accompany Robert Peary on his historic 1896 expedition to the North Pole. His works seldom find their way out of private collections, the largest of which can be found at the Explorers Club in New York, which was founded by Cook.

In this contemplative oil painting, Operti captures Dr. Frederick A. Cook studying and dissecting a native bird during Robert Peary’s famed 1891-92 expedition of the Arctic in search of the North Pole. Depicted here in a fur hat and coat to protect against the frigid polar air, Cook served as the surgeon on several of Peary’s explorations. He befriended famed explorer Roald Amundsen and was a seasoned explorer in his own right. Both Cook and Peary claimed to have reached the North Pole first, and the debate about their divergent claims is still waged today.

Albert Operti was born in Italy and educated in Britain. While part of Peary's expedition through Greenland in 1896, the artist executed hundreds of sketches and studies that would serve as the basis for many of his future works. He painted several special commissions for the New York Explorers Club, which was a primary patron of Operti until his death in 1927. Operti’s works are not often seen or exhibited, making this a rare opportunity to acquire both a stirring painting and an important piece of history.

The painting was featured on the cover and discussed in Polar Priorities, the annual journal of the Frederick A. Cook Society, in the December 2006 edition, Volume 26.

Circa 1900

Canvas: 43 1/2” high x 34 1/8” wide
Frame: 51 1/2” high x 42” wide 
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Portrait of Dr. Frederick A. Cook by Albert Operti
Period: 1816-1918
Origin: America
Type: Paintings
Depth: 2.0
Width: 42.0
Height: 51.5
Style: Realism
Canvas Width: 34.125
Canvas Height: 43.5
Portrait of Dr. Frederick A. Cook by Albert Operti
Eight Important Portrait Artists

The human face draws our attention and art is no exception. People from ages past look out at us from their golden frames and remind us how much we humans are the same....

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Buy with Confidence

At M.S. Rau, we are committed to building a long-term, rewarding relationship with each and every client. That’s why your purchase is backed by our 125% guarantee.

Learn More

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