We recently added several lithographs from Henry Lewis’ DAS ILLUSTRIERTE MISSISSIPPITHAL (The Valley of the Mississippi Illustrated) to our collection. In the late 1840’s, Lewis traveled the length of the Mississippi and, with the assistance of other artists, assembled a collection of sketches detailing scenery of the entire river. Based on these drawings, he proceeded to paint a panorama on a continuous length of canvas, which would be moved and viewed through a frame. The completed piece (hundreds and hundreds of feet in length) began its tour of American cities in the fall of 1848. Due to its popularity, a European tour quickly followed. While on tour in Dusseldorf in 1853, Lewis met and teamed up with the publisher Heinrich Arnz to redo the sketches as lithographs illustrating a book on Mississippi scenery. While production was sporadic and relatively unprofitable, the resulting seventy-eight lithographs provide an early and remarkably complete visual record of the Mississippi River.
In preparation for our upcoming landscape show, Resonant Terrain, we have added several lithographs by Richard Florsheim, one of the artists selected for the exhibit, to our 20th century print inventory. With titles like “City Lights”, “Illuminations”, and “Light and Water”, it is apparent the Florsheim was engrossed with and inspired by his surroundings, allowing both the sea and the city to have equal reign over his creative focus. Using large, gestural sweeps of the lithographic pencil over stone and dynamic swathes of color, Florsheim was able to capture the vibrancy of his hometowns of Chicago and Provincetown.
Richard Florsheim was active as a painter, sculptor and graphics artist in Chicago, Milwaukee, Provincetown, and Woodstock, New York. Florsheim was born in Chicago in 1916. He spent his youth and early adulthood studying at the University of Chicago and in New York with artist Aaron Bohrod. His father paid for a lengthy European independent study, where Florsheim exhibited at Salon des Refusés, and the Musée du Jeu de Paume honored him by purchasing one of his paintings, Don Quixote.
Florsheim returned to Chicago in 1939, and began lithography in 1940, exhibiting at the Quest Gallery and working out of a studio on North Avenue. He then enlisted in the US Navy, active in the Pacific Theater as a cartographer. It was at this time that he also obtained patents for his radar plane-spotting technique.
After the war, he resumed his artistic career, exhibiting widely. He helped found the Artists’ League of the Midwest with Artists’ Equity Association of New York. He was assistant director of the Arts Center Association, 1951-52, and taught at the Layton School of Art in Milwaukee from 1949 to 1950, and the Contemporary Art Workshop in Chicago from 1952 to 1963. From 1965 to 1973, he was a board member of the Illinois Arts Council. Florsheim was a member of the National Academy of Design, the Society of American Graphic Artists, the Provincetown Art Association, which he served as Trustee and Vice President from 1962 to 1971, and the Chicago Society of Artists.
We are less than a week until Christmas, and if you are like us, you are probably still searching for one or two last-minute gifts for that special someone (or someones!). We have you covered! We have always believed that art makes the BEST gifts. It is meaningful, special, and unlike the go-to Christmas sweater, always the right size. We have prints and maps for all interests, at all price points. Stop by our gallery or visit our website www.oldprintgallery.com to browse our collection of historic, antique, decorative, and fine original art.
Below is a Holiday Gift Guide for 2014, with ideas for everyone on your list. We hope you enjoy our selections, and if you need more ideas, give us a call or stop by our gallery and we will be happy to help you find something fantastic. Happy shopping and Happy Holidays!
For the Cook:
For the Sports Fan:
For the Washingtonian:
For the World Traveler:
For the History-Buff:
For the Nature-Lover:
For the Map Enthusiast:
For the Kids:
For the City-Slicker:
For the Contemporary:
In honor of this morning’s “Blood Moon” total lunar eclipse (read about it here), we are sharing a print round-up of our favorite moon related prints. These lunar prints are stunning scientific and artistic representations, from multiple centuries. We hope you enjoy!
This is an interesting and decorative map of the surface of the Moon. Doppelmayr was an astronomer as well as a professor of mathematics. He often worked with the Homann heirs. Together they produced a number of atlases, including Atlas Coelestis and Selenographica.
This print is from Chambers’ and Rees’ Cyclopaedia or, An Universal Dictionary of Arts and Sciences. The composite shows diagrams relating to eclipses.
This chart appeared in Smith’s Illustrated Astronomy, Designed for the Use of the Public or Common Schools in the United States. This wonderful work was produced by Asa Smith, the Principal of Public School No. 12, in New York City. He notes that the purpose was “to present all distinguishing principles in physical Astronomy with as few words as possible; but with such ocular demonstrations, by way of diagrams and maps, as shall make the subject easily understood.”
This print is from Das Illustrierte Mississippithal (The Valley of the Mississippi Illustrated). In the late 1840’s, Henry Lewis traveled the length of the Mississippi and, with the assistance of other artists, assembled a collection of sketches detailing scenery of the entire river. Based on these drawings, Lewis proceeded to paint a panorama on a continuous length of canvas which would be moved and viewed through a frame. In the fall of 1848, the completed piece (hundreds and hundreds of feet in length), began its tour of American cities. A European tour followed and while in Dusseldorf, in 1853, Lewis teamed up with the publisher Heinrich Arnz to redo the sketches as lithographs, illustrating a book on Mississippi scenery. While production was sporadic and relatively unprofitable, the resulting seventy-eight lithographs provide a early and remarkably complete record of the Mississippi River.
This etching by 20th century printmaker John Taylor Arms (1887-1953) is one of many in his oeuvre to include moons or moonlight. The print is an edition of 100 in color and 75 in black and white. This particular impression is an artist proof, and was printed by Frederick Reynolds. Reynolds was born in London, immigrating to New York in 1911 to establish himself as an artist in the United States. He was an etcher and mezzotint engraver, and operated his own printing studio in New York. In addition to his own works, Reynolds printed for other artists, including Arms.
Above are a selection of moon-related prints and drawings from our 20th century and contemporary printmakers. While varying in style and technique, all depict the moon and it’s luminescence casting light and shadows throughout the foreground, making for some very interesting compositions.
Today we are sharing a new addition to our inventory- a wonderful ephemeral depiction of Washington, D.C.- Casimir Bohn’s The Rose of the Capital. As only the second example ever recorded, it is a remarkable survival. The Rose consists of a single sheet, trimmed to a circle with scalloped edges and printed recto and verso with images of Washington landmarks arrayed radially around a central image of a rosebud.
The highlight is a view as seen looking over the Capitol toward the Mall and the Potomac, on a much smaller scale but similar in conception to several other Sachse views of the city. Some of the other images include interior and exterior views of the White House, the House and Senate chambers, the Treasury building, and equestrian statues of the Presidents Washington and Jackson.
The Rose folds to fit snugly in a fragile triangular envelope of buff paper, which almost miraculously survives here.