YEAR END SALE.
Howard Chandler Christy Lithograph Titled "Which?" (1902). In this painting the ghostly image of a wounded soldier is shown kneeling between a woman and man in a beseeching pose. The title implies that the woman is trying to decide between two men: one of whom is away at the war. Although he was known partly for illustrating beautiful women and was frequently compared to Harrison Fisher, Christy explored many other themes often in a more serious and somber tone than Fisher. Partially attached to backing at top edge. Christy completed a number of paintings referencing the Spanish American War (1898).
Signed in plate. Copyright 1905. Charles Scribners Sons. A. Grignard and Company NY.
12.5 x 16”, 31.7 x 40.6cm.
A companion Christy painting called "It is Not Only the Bullets that Wound" likely shows the other side of the above drama and the woman's decision. The soldier depicted in this second painting has apparently received a "Dear John" letter from the imagined woman to his right.
Both of these paintings are rare and difficult to find.
The US Military was unprepared for this war and hastily engaged amid a strong debate over its necessity. Military dead and wounded numbers were small but in the US many were stunned by the casualties.