19th Century Prints, Fashion, Lithograph, Portraits, Prints

Currier and Ives “Girl’s Name” Portraits

Today on the OPG blog we are sharing several of our Currier and Ives prints- the “girl’s name” portraits. Produced in large quantities for public sale, these prints were strictly a commercial venture for the firm. In addition to the 600 portraits of historical figures, presidents, sporting heroes, and drama stars, Currier and Ives published 250 “girl’s name” prints, close to 30 percent of their total portrait output. These name prints were idealized portraits of women and children, titled with popular Christian names of the day. To capitalize on their popularity, the firm would sometimes publish multiple prints under the same name or title- there are thirteen “Mary” prints, five “Josephine” prints, seven “Susan” prints. The lithographs all have slightly different compositions, picturing the girl in a new and elaborate outfit, sitting or standing, facing left or facing right, yellow roses in hair or red roses in hair. Several prints do not have a name at all; rather they are titled with sweet sobriquets like “The American Beauty”, “The Southern Beauty”, “My Sweetheart”, “Pride of the West”, and so on. Today, these sentimental prints are collected for their charming beauty, elaborate costumes, and delightful compositional elements. We hope enjoy them!

Maria. : 48. N. Currier. Lithograph, undated. Image size 12 1/4 x 8 3/4 inches. Shown seated in white dress with red cloak, hand strumming a lute. LINK.

Maria. : 48. Nathaniel Currier. Lithograph, undated. Image size 12 1/4 x 8 3/4 inches. Shown seated in white dress with red cloak, hand strumming a lute. LINK.

Josephine. Currier and Ives. Lithograph, undated.  Vignette 12 3/4 x 8 3/4 inches. Shown in white lace dress with pink trim, wearing a gold double-strand necklace, with dark hair swept up in a jeweled headband.

Josephine. Currier and Ives. Lithograph, undated. Vignette 12 3/4 x 8 3/4 inches. Shown in white lace dress with pink trim, wearing a gold double-strand necklace, with dark hair swept up in a jeweled headband. LINK.

Catherine.  Nathaniel Currier. Lithograph, 1845. Image size 11 5/8 x 8 1/16 inches. A full length portrait, with Catherine shown seated in a red dress, bouquet in hand and roses in a large vase on table. LINK.

Catherine. Nathaniel Currier. Lithograph, 1845. Image size 11 5/8 x 8 1/16 inches. A full length portrait, with Catherine shown seated in a red dress, bouquet in hand and roses in a large vase on table. LINK.

The Pride of the West. Currier and Ives. Lithograph, 1870. Image size 12 x 8 inches. Portrait of woman with  a red gown and roses woven throughout her hair. LINK.

The Pride of the West. Currier and Ives. Lithograph, 1870. Image size 12 x 8 inches. Portrait of woman with a red gown and roses woven throughout her hair. LINK.

The Eastern Beauty. Currier and Ives. Lithograph, undated. Vignette 11 7/8 x 7 5/8 inches. A carefully drawn woman, adorned with a red bow at her neck. LINK.

The Eastern Beauty. Currier and Ives. Lithograph, undated. Vignette 11 7/8 x 7 5/8 inches. A carefully drawn woman, adorned with a red bow at her neck. LINK.

Julia. Currier and Ives. Lithograph,  undated. Vignette 12 3/8 x 9 inches. This portrait shows a more mature woman in a blue dress adorned with pink roses. LINK.

Julia. Currier and Ives. Lithograph, undated. Vignette 12 3/8 x 9 inches. This portrait shows a more mature woman in a blue dress adorned with pink roses. LINK.

Susie. Currier and Ives. Lithograph, undated. Vignette 12 3/4 x 8 7/8 inches. A coquette with long, dark curls tied by a pink hair-bow gives a sidelong glance. LINK.

Susie. Currier and Ives. Lithograph, undated. Vignette 12 3/4 x 8 7/8 inches. A coquette with long, dark curls tied by a pink hair-bow gives a sidelong glance. LINK.

Henrietta. Nathaniel Currier. Lithograph, undated. Image size 12 1/8 x 8 1/2 inches. Yellow roses adorn an eyelet ruffled dress. LINK.

Henrietta. Nathaniel Currier. Lithograph, undated. Image size 12 1/8 x 8 1/2 inches. Yellow roses adorn an eyelet ruffled dress. LINK.

Josephine. Nathaniel Currier. Lithograph, undated. Image size 11 5/8 x 8 1/2 inches. A formal setting with gown of rose and white. LINK.

Josephine. Nathaniel Currier. Lithograph, undated. Image size 11 5/8 x 8 1/2 inches. A formal setting with gown of rose and white. LINK.

Mary. N. Currier. Lithograph, 1845. Image size 12 x 8 5/8". Shown in full-length lace-trimmed dress, with a picture of the S.S. Swallow on the wall behind her. LINK.

Mary. Nathaniel Currier. Lithograph, 1845. Image size 12 x 8 5/8″. Shown in full-length lace-trimmed dress, with a picture of the S.S. Swallow on the wall behind her. LINK.

Spring. Currier and Ives. Lithograph, 1870. Vignette 12 1/2 x 9 1/4 inches.  Multicolored flowers in her hair and bouquet accent a blue dress and bow. LINK.

Spring. Currier and Ives. Lithograph, 1870. Vignette 12 1/2 x 9 1/4 inches. Multicolored flowers in her hair and bouquet accent a blue dress and bow. LINK.

 

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18th Century Prints, 19th Century Prints, Aquatint, Chromolithograph, Engraving, Etching, Fashion, Lithograph, Mezzotint, Portraits, Prints, Science, Stipple

Ballooning Prints

Ascensions Aerostatiques Les Plus Remarquables. : Resume Historique de L'Aerostation. Published a Paris chez Barthelemier Freres, Rue Hautefeuille, 22 et 30. Engraving handcolored, 1851.  Print lists 81 balloon flights starting with 1638 although the official first ascension was in 1783.  A great history of balloon flight, with successful and tragic flights. Image size 18 11/16 x 26 7/16" (47.4 x 67.1 cm). LINK.

Ascensions Aerostatiques Les Plus Remarquables. : Resume Historique de L’Aerostation. Published a Paris chez Barthelemier Freres, Rue Hautefeuille, 22 et 30. Engraving handcolored, 1851. Print lists 81 balloon flights starting with 1638 although the official first ascension was in 1783. A great history of balloon flight, with successful and tragic flights. Image size 18 11/16 x 26 7/16″ (47.4 x 67.1 cm).

Of all the experimental and intellectual developments in the 18th century, none captivated both scientists and the general public more than balloon travel. Ballooning played an important part in early aeronautical development,  the limitless expanse of sky beckoning scientists with hopes of exploration, excitement, and inexhaustible possibility. The first trepidatious voyages were described in eager and precise detail, and often included maps and diagrams of scientific observations. Early etchings and engravings were also made to capture the discoveries and milestones made by the scientists, explorers, and daredevils who braved the air. Below are several of our ballooning prints, selected from both our Georgetown and New York galleries. Be sure to click on the links to see more for our inventory.

Details Geometriques de la Machine Aerostatique... Monsieur Jos. Montgolfier, le 19 June 1784. A Lyon chez Joubert fils, Graveur et Md. D'Estampes, G de rue Merciere. Etching, 1784. LINK.

Details Geometriques de la Machine Aerostatique… Monsieur Jos. Montgolfier, le 19 June 1784. A Lyon chez Joubert fils, Graveur et Md. D’Estampes, G de rue Merciere. Etching, 1784.

The first clearly recorded instance of a balloon carrying (human) passengers was built by the brothers Joseph-Michel and Jacques-Etienne Montgolfier in Annonay, France. These brothers came from a family of paper manufacturers and had noticed ash rising in paper fires, which led to their experiments with balloon travel. The Montgolfier brothers gave their first public demonstration of their invention on June 4, 1783. They stood on a circular platform attached to the bottom of the balloon and  hand-fed the fire through openings on either side of the balloon’s skirt. The balloon reached an altitude of at least 500 feet and traveled about 5½ miles before landing safely 25 minutes later.  Later that year, scientists Jacques Alexander Charles and Nicholas Louis Robert created the first gas-balloon, utilizing hydrogen to keep the balloon and basket afloat for a significantly longer period of time.  Within the next ten years, numerous daredevils risked the skies with the help of silk balloons, wicker baskets, and new concoctions of gas and flame.

By 1785, the first successful crossing of the English Channel was accomplished by French balloonist Jean-Pierre Blanchard and American John Jeffries, using a gas balloon. They started in Dover, but once they were positioned over the water, the balloon lost altitude. The pair feverishly tossed all items from the basket, including their clothes. They landed safely in France two hours later, in nothing but their underwear.

Mr. Vincent Lunardi Esquire. Stipple engraving, 1784. Oval size 4 3/4 x 4 " ( 122 x 102 mm). LINK.

Mr. Vincent Lunardi Esquire. Stipple engraving, 1784. Oval size 4 3/4 x 4 ” ( 122 x 102 mm).

Most of early balloon flight and exploration occurred in France, with backing provided by the Académie Royale des Sciences. England was slow to catch on to the ballooning phenomenon. The first manned balloon flight in England was by Signor Vincent Lunardi, an Italian, who ascended from Moorfields on September 15, 1784. His gas balloon was outfitted with wooden oars, with the intended purpose of directional control. Fueled by the fervor surrounding Lunardi’s first flight in London, ballooning finally became a veritable craze in England. Aeronauts became the some of the most talked about celebrities of the day, and tales of their exploits and adventures swept across Britain creating a national mania for the sport. Whereas ballooning had been popular on the Continent since Pilatre and Rozier’s first flight in a “Montgolfiere”, it was not until Lunardi’s daring flight that it gained popularity in England.

Exact Representation of the Grand Aerostatick Machine with which Mr. Lunardi ascended from the Artillery Ground Sep. 15 1784. Published by W. Wells, Sep. 28 1784, at No. 132, Fleet Street. Etching, handcolored,1784. Image size 12 x 8 3/4" (305 x 224 mm). LINK.

Exact Representation of the Grand Aerostatick Machine with which Mr. Lunardi ascended from the Artillery Ground Sep. 15 1784. Published by W. Wells, Sep. 28 1784, at No. 132, Fleet Street. Etching, handcolored,1784. Image size 12 x 8 3/4″ (305 x 224 mm).

James Sadler Esq. First English Aeronaut. By Benjamin Taylor. Published by B. Taylor, No. 7 Brewer St. Golden Sq., London. Stipple engraving, 1812. 5 1/2 x 6 1/4" (140 x 160 mm) plus title and margins. LINK.

James Sadler Esq. First English Aeronaut. By Benjamin Taylor. Published by B. Taylor, No. 7 Brewer St. Golden Sq., London. Stipple engraving, 1812. 5 1/2 x 6 1/4″ (140 x 160 mm) plus title and margins.

Nicknamed the “King of the Balloon”, James Sadler was considered the first English aeronaut. He made his first balloon ascent in 1784, the same years as Lunardi’s famous flight, flying from Oxford to the village of Woodeaton, six miles away. On October 7, 1811, he set a balloon speed record when he flew from Birmingham to Boston, Lincolnshire, in less than four hours. In 1812, he attempted to cross the Irish Sea, but failed, landing in the ocean near Anglesey where he was rescued by a passing fishing boat. Sadler is remembered as one of the pioneers of aeronautical exploration in Britain and his daring flights helped make ballooning a national pastime.

A view of the Balloon of Mr. Sadler's. : This Balloon Ascended with Mr. Sadler and Captain Paget of the Royal Navy : from the Mermaid Gardens at Hackney in Middlesex at three O'clock on Monday afternoon August the 12th 1811 and descended in a field. Engraving, c.1811. Image size 16 15/16 x 13 7/8" (415 x 354 mm). LINK.

A view of the Balloon of Mr. Sadler’s. : This Balloon Ascended with Mr. Sadler and Captain Paget of the Royal Navy : from the Mermaid Gardens at Hackney in Middlesex at three O’clock on Monday afternoon August the 12th 1811 and descended in a field. Engraving, c.1811. Image size 16 15/16 x 13 7/8″ (415 x 354 mm).

Part of the Balloon with which Mr. Sadler ascended from Dublin, Octr. 1, 1812. : passed over upwards 237 Miles by Water, and 40 by Land, and descended at Sea. Robert Havell, Jr. Aquatint and engraving handcolored, undated, c.1812. Image size 13 1/4 x 9 1/8" (337 x 230 mm).LINK.

Part of the Balloon with which Mr. Sadler ascended from Dublin, Octr. 1, 1812. : passed over upwards 237 Miles by Water, and 40 by Land, and descended at Sea. By Robert Havell, Jr. Aquatint and engraving handcolored, undated, c.1812. Image size 13 1/4 x 9 1/8″ (337 x 230 mm).

Charles Green was another celebrated English aeronaut, He was the first person to undertake an ascent in a balloon filled with carbureted hydrogen gas. Green made 526 ascents during the course of his daring career, many of which tested the boundaries of aeronautical aviation. An eccentric at heart, Green made an ascent off the back of his pony, a feat which won him a reputation as daredevil. He constructed the great Nassau balloon, in which he made his famous ascent from Vauxhall Gardens. In 1821, Green was the first aeronaut to demonstrate that coal-gas could be used to inflate balloons. Prior to this discovery, volatile hydrogen gas had been used which was extremely expensive and took up to two days to inflate a large balloon. Green also invented the guide-rope, which was used to regulate the ascent and descent of the balloon.

Mr. Charles Green, The Aeronaut. By John Hollins. Published by Hodgson & Graves, London. Mezzotint, 1838. Engraved by  G. T. Payne. 15 9/16 x 12 1/2" (395 x 317 mm) plus title and wide margins. LINK.

Mr. Charles Green, The Aeronaut. By John Hollins. Published by Hodgson & Graves, London. Mezzotint, 1838. Engraved by G. T. Payne. 15 9/16 x 12 1/2″ (395 x 317 mm) plus title and wide margins.

Ballooning became a significant part of popular culture. Spectators would gather to watch the balloons take off and land. Fashion houses drew inspiration from the lauded air explorers. The wealthy that could afford such luxuries would take trips in balloons. Once made maneuverable, balloons were even used by militaries. The first military use of a balloon occurred during the Battle of Fleures in 1784. The balloon L’Entrprenant was used by French Aerostatic Corps to watch the movements of the Coalition Army.

Ascensions Aerostatiques Les Plus Remarquables. : Resume Historique de L'Aerostation. Published a Paris chez Barthelemier Freres, Rue Hautefeuille, 22 et 30. Engraving handcolored, 1851.  Print lists 81 balloon flights starting with 1638 although the official first ascension was in 1783.  A great history of balloon flight, with successful and tragic flights. Image size 18 11/16 x 26 7/16" (47.4 x 67.1 cm). LINK.

Ascensions Aerostatiques Les Plus Remarquables. : Resume Historique de L’Aerostation. Published a Paris chez Barthelemier Freres, Rue Hautefeuille, 22 et 30. Engraving handcolored, 1851. Print lists 81 balloon flights starting with 1638 although the official first ascension was in 1783. A great history of balloon flight, with successful and tragic flights. Image size 18 11/16 x 26 7/16″ (47.4 x 67.1 cm).

The Ascension of Mr, and Mrs, Graham, in the Great Magnificent Balloon. Engraving, 1824. Printed below the image states "Mr. Graham, having announced that he would ascend yesterday from White Conduit House, Pentonville, in part for the benefit of the widow of the late unfortunate Mr. Harris, immense crowds occupied all the grounds in the vicinity at an early hour, and the Garden itself was filled with large numbers of paying visitors." Image size 13 1/4 x 8 1/2" (337 x 217 mm). LINK.

The Ascension of Mr, and Mrs, Graham, in the Great Magnificent Balloon. Engraving, 1824. Printed below the image states “Mr. Graham, having announced that he would ascend yesterday from White Conduit House, Pentonville, in part for the benefit of the widow of the late unfortunate Mr. Harris, immense crowds occupied all the grounds in the vicinity at an early hour, and the Garden itself was filled with large numbers of paying visitors.” Image size 13 1/4 x 8 1/2″ (337 x 217 mm).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bataille de Fleurus (26 Juin 1794). Engraving, hand-colored. c.1830. Pellerin & Co., imp-edit. Imagerie D'Epinal No.178.   Image depicts the French military with a balloon tethered in the backgrounds. Image size 7 7/8 x 12 15/16" (200 x 328 mm). LINK.

Bataille de Fleurus (26 Juin 1794). Engraving, hand-colored. c.1830. Pellerin & Co., imp-edit. Imagerie D’Epinal No.178. Image depicts the French military with a balloon tethered in the backgrounds. Image size 7 7/8 x 12 15/16″ (200 x 328 mm).

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19th Century Prints, Early 20th Century, Fashion, Lithograph, Past/Present, Pencil Drawing, Prints

Past/Present: Woman and Hat

past present logo copy

Today we  have a new Past/Present post for our blog readers, featuring two fashion prints. Although two different ages, one can only imagine the smartly-dressed woman shown in the 19th century print  catching the eye and sketching pencil of Martin Lewis years later. The similarities –  tightly curled hair, topped with a fashionable red hat- are too striking to ignore.

Image on Left: Un Fantaisie. Published by Jeannin, Place du Louvre, 20, Paris. Lithograph by Formentin & Co., after Compte Calix.  Lithograph, hand-colored, undated. 

Image on Right: Women with Red Hat. Martin Lewis.  Pencil with color crayon, c. 1930. Stamped on verso “Collection of Lucile Deming Lewis”.

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19th Century Prints, Conte Drawing, Early 20th Century, Engraving, Fashion, Past/Present, Prints

Past/Present: Two Women

Today we have a new Past/present for our readers, featuring prints of women in hats.  The older print is from a well-known and influential fashion magazine, La Mode Illustree. It was founded in 1860 by Emmeline Raymond, who edited it until her death in 1902. She expanded her influence to American women by becoming the Paris correspondent for Harper’s Bazaar when it first appeared in 1867.  La Mode Illustree was distributed on a weekly basis and each issue had a featured fashion plate inserted.

The early 20th century print is by Peggy Bacon, an artist known for her satirical and jocular commentary on New York’s social scene and art world. Her earlier works were mostly drypoint, but by the late 1920s, Bacon was employing lithography, etching and pastels. Through printmaking, her art developed a characteristic style- the conversion of appearances or people for a comically perceptive effect.

Image on Left: Le Moniteur de La Mode, No. 2 by Jules David. Published by Abel Goubud, Paris. Handcolored engraving, 1883.

Image on Right: Two Women #1 by Peggy Bacon. Conte drawing, 1931.





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18th Century Prints, Fashion, Pochoir

The Fashion Prints of George Barbier- “Pavane. Robe de Soir, de Worth.”

Pavane Robe de Soir, de Worth. By George Barbier, 1921.

Our next blog post is a pochoir print by French artist George Barbier. Entitled Pavane. Robe de Soir, de Worth., this richly colored print was published in La Gazette de Bon Ton, in Paris, 1921.  Barbier was known for bestowing a sense of movement and life to the clothing he illustrated. Pavane is characteristic of Barbier’s fashion prints, in that it displays the clothing on a figure in an imagined setting, as opposed to on a manikin. Due to his precise eye for shapes and color, he was identified as one of the great French illustrators of the early 20th century. 

Barbier drew his inspiration from 18th century art and the highly-stylized, flowing curvilinear forms of his fellow Art-Nouveau artists. He honed his color skills by observing the work of Leon Balst, and his work with outlines and shape definition was inspired by the work of Aubrey Beardsley. Born in Nantes, France in 1882, Barbier studied at the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris from 1908 to 1910.  During his time there, he led a group of fellow artists, designers, and illustrators, in the exploration of new, graphic techniques. Nicknamed “The Knights of the Bracelet”, a name given to them by Vogue Magazine, this elite circle of artists, including Charles Martin, Paul Iribe, and Georges Lepape, were known for their flamboyant and extravagant mannerisms and style of dress. During this time, Barbier designed theater and ballet costumes, and illustrated novels and magazines.  He also dabbled in jewelry making and glass and wallpaper design.

 

Cover of the popular Gazette du Bon Ton

After 1915, Barbier focused his artistic talent on fashion illustration and design. He was frequently published in Gazette du Bon Ton, where he illustrated almost exclusively for the prestigious House of Worth. Barbier was also found in L’ Illustration magazine, and was one of a group of selected artists that illustrated the limited “editions de luxe”- intended as collectors’ items only. In 1920, he worked with Erte to design sets and costumes for Folies Bergere, an established music hall in Paris. Shortly thereafter, in 1924, he designed costumes for Monsieur Beaucaire, a silent film starring Rudolph Valentino that satirized the excesses of the court of Louis XV.  Barbier was extremely talented in the printmaking method of pochoir, and he received high acclaim for it up until his untimely death in 1932.

Monsieur Beaucaire Poster

Pochoir is a method of printmaking that utilizes stencils. Characterized by bold, geometric shapes and lush, vibrant color, this method was extremely suitable for fashion and architecture prints that needed to emphasize the interaction between color and pattern.  Introduced to commercial publishing in France in the late 1880s, pochoir printmaking uses anywhere between 25- 250 different stencils for just one print. With so many stencils used, positioning of each stencil is extremely important, making pochoir a very exact and arduous process. The process begins with the creation of the stencils- usually made out of thin zinc or copper plates, cut by a straight-edge razor or knife. A black and white print often acts as the base, and offers an outline to the artist. Each color of the print is then applied separately, and a new stencil is used for each color. To add depth and clarity to the print, Barbier used a combination of gouache paint and watercolor on each print. The thickness of the gouache print results in a very defined and bold color block. Watercolor was utilized for the skin tone as well as the background- a delicate wash of color applied where needed. This gave the print its contrast- bringing attention to the fashion and making the design jump off the page.

In this print and in many others, Barbier applied small pops of bright color- the gold trim of the dress, the blue swipe of eyeliner, and the burnt orange and red feathers on the fan- to add visual interest. He added texture by varying the style of paint application. Sometimes he would dab or sponge paint onto the print to mimic the look of fur.  To achieve the look of a smooth fabric (such as silk or satin), he would use a very thick and even application of paint, and then add a second color to mimic the sheen.  Barbier was extremely talented and is credited with popularizing pochoir illustration in the 1920s. His prints are very rare and highly collectable.

To inquire about purchasing the print and to view it on our website, click here.  To view a selection of other fashion prints we offer, click here.

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