The Art of Charles Elmer Harris- Sale 256 by Rachel Davis Fine Arts

Event Description

The Artwork of Charles Elmer Harris at Buy-Now Online Sale


Charles Elmer Harris (American 1917-1993)

A Cleveland painter, Charles Elmer Harris was born in 1917 in Cleveland, Ohio.  While serving as a US Marine in North Africa, he became deeply passionate about his African heritage.  Later in the 1960's, he legally changed his name to Beni E. Kosh which means "Son of Ethiopia" to acknowledge his African heritage and conversion to Islam.

Harris was a student of Cleveland artist, Paul Travis, at the Cleveland Institute of Art. Otherwise he was self-trained.  His work was stylistically diverse and he experimented with cubism, surrealism, magic and social realism, portraiture, cityscapes and abstraction, to name a few.  He developed his own distinctive form during the second half of the 20th c.

Harris rarely exhibited or sold his work until later in his life.  He was affiliated with the "Sho Nuff Art Group", a group of seven African-American artists in Cleveland, and exhibited with the artist group at Karamu House, a Black cultural center in Cleveland's Fairfax neighborhood which was originally founded in 1927 by Rowena and Russel Jelliffies as The Playhouse Settlement, that also exhibited works of Charles Sallee, Jr, and Hughie Lee-Smith.  "Karamu" is a Swahili word meaning "a place of joyful meeting."   It was not until after Harris' death in 1993 that his contributions to the local art community and his works were rediscovered, recognized and appreciated, then later catalogued & sold.  Writing in the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Steven Litt, noted "Harris at his best was a powerful artist with a keen eye and a knack for painting both abstractions and representational imagery."

Harris' work is noted in the catalog Yet Still, We Rise: African American Art in Cleveland 1920-1970 and included in exhibitions at the Cleveland State University, the Butler Institute of American Art, and the Riffe Gallery during 1996-97.   His paintings are in the collections of the Cleveland Museum of Art, the David C. Driscoll Center for The Study of Visual Arts & Culture of African Americans & the African Diaspora at the University of Maryland and the Petrucci Family Foundation Collection of African-American Art.

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Buyer Pays Shipping and Handling Cost. We will pack and ship small items only. Buyers of large quantities or high value must contact an outside party. Please contact us for a list of packers in the Cleveland area.

For in-house shipping, our fees include all packaging time and materials, handling, insurance and freight charges. Shipping costs are calculated on dimensional weight. The costs to ship may exceed value of item(s). Minimum fee for any package with in-house service is $30. Shipping and handling with our in-house services can be up to 3-5 weeks from time payment is received, due to high volume we handle from auction. If more expedited services are required, please contact an outside shipper.

We highly recommend requesting a shipping quote from us or an outside shipper, before bidding on an item. Items must be removed 10 days from date of payment received or storage fees will be charged.

Terms & Conditions


1. While great care has been taken to correctly catalogue the items in the best judgment of RND Inc., neither RND Inc. nor any of its agents are responsible for the items correctness. All property is sold “as is” and neither the auctioneer nor consignor makes any warranties or representations of any nature in regard to the merchandise. No statements made at the sale, on the invoice or elsewhere shall be deemed such a representation or warranty or be subject to liability. All weights and measurements are approximate. Purchasers are advised to inspect and satisfy themselves of the items being sold prior to the sale. RND Inc. may, but shall have no obligation to consider any reasonable request to refund any items on the grounds of authenticity. Only under the following condition will a refund be considered. a. RND Inc. must be notified by telephone and in writing within 14 days from the date of the sale that the lot is a forgery. b. Within 21 days of the date of the sale, the purchaser must return the lot in the condition it was in at the time of sale accompanied by a letter from a mutually recognized authority in the field that states that the lot is a forgery.

2. RND Inc. reserves the right to withdraw any lots without prior notice.

3. All lots will be sold in numerical order unless otherwise stated by the auctioneer.

4. The auctioneer will accept bids from bidders present at the auction, internet bidders and proxy bidders participating by telephone or who leave written order bids with RND Inc. in advance of the auction. RND, Inc. will not be held responsible for any errors or failure to execute bids, or for any computer glitches on internet bids.

5. RND Inc. has the right to reject bids based on the auctioneer's discretion. The auctioneer is the sole judge as to the amount to be advanced by each succeeding bid.

6. Some lots in the sale may be subject to a reserve. The reserve is a confidential minimum price agreed upon between RND Inc. and the consignor. The reserve will always be set equal to or below the low estimate. An agent of RND Inc. will execute any reserve on behalf of the consignor.

7. The highest bidder acknowledged by the auctioneer shall be the purchaser. In the event of any dispute between bidders, the auctioneer shall have the absolute discretion either to determine the successful bidder or to re-offer and resell the lot in dispute. If any dispute arises after the sale, RND Inc. sales records shall be conclusive as to the purchaser and amount of the highest bid.

8. All invoices are due immediately. A 1.5% monthly interest rate will incur on all unpaid invoices after 30 days, in addition to storage fees described in item no. 12.

9. Personal checks will be acceptable only if bank authorization has been received, or if two forms of identification are approved by RND Inc. Merchandise will be held until check has cleared.

10. All purchases are subject to the county's 8% sales tax unless the purchaser possesses and provides an Ohio sales tax exemption certificate. Sales tax will not apply if the item is purchased for re-sale, or is purchased by a bidder out of the state of Ohio and the item is being shipped out of the state of Ohio by RND Inc or a commercial shipping company.

11. A premium of 24% for internet bidding, will be applied to all property sold, to be paid by the purchaser as part of the sale price. For payment by cash or check, buyer's premium would be discounted by 3%.

12. On the fall of the auctioneer's hammer, title to the offered lot will pass to the highest acknowledged bidder who thereupon immediately assumes full risk and responsibility. RND Inc. shall not be liable for any damage to property left on the premises. Any merchandise not paid for in full the day of the auction will be kept in storage for no more than 30 days. After 30 days the merchandise will be a.) re-submitted in the next appropriate auction, without reserve, holding the purchaser liable for any deficiency plus all costs of sale. b.) sent to a public warehouse at the account, risk and expense of the purchaser. Whether sent to a public warehouse or stored by RND Inc., the purchaser shall be liable for all actual expense incurred plus a monthly storage charge due at beginning of 30day period in the amount of $25.USD minimum or 5% of the purchase price per lot, whichever is higher. No property will be released until storage fees are paid in full.

13. All paid property left over 3 months will be considered abandoned and no refunds will be issued.

14. Any right of the purchaser under this agreement or under the law shall not be assignable and shall be enforceable only by the original purchaser and not by any subsequent owner or any person who shall subsequently acquire any interest. No purchaser shall be entitled to any remedy, relief or damages beyond return of the property, rescission of the sale and refund of the purchase price; and without limitation, no purchaser shall be entitled to damages of any kind.

15. RND Corporation at their discretion will provide in-house shipping for small items. For purchasers of large quantities, large items, high value items or fragile items and any frames must go through a third party shipper. A list of third party shippers is available upon request. The minimum shipping fee for RND Inc. to package and ship is $30.00. Shipping charges will include all costs of time, materials, insurance and freight charges. Freight charges are calculated on dimensional weight.

16. Information, condition reports and Registration approval requests must be received by 3pm on the day before the auction day (US Eastern Time). Thereafter, RND Inc. will try to accommodate without guarantee.

Auctioneer: Rachel Davis