Tag Archive: 0graphic arts

‘Tis the season…

‘Tis the season…

5th December 2013

I thought this week I’d post something seasonal: Vieux noëls illustrés.  Airs primitifs recueillis et arrangés pour le piano (Paris, 1867), compiled by the abbé Rastier, maitre de chapelle at Tours Cathedral.  It comprises 12 old carols (‘douze perles choisies’), collected locally by Rastier, in new arrangements, and each presented within a historiated border by the popular illustrator, […]

Cabbage patch babies

Cabbage patch babies

13th November 2013

Just this last week I discovered a publishing phenomenon I hadn’t come across before: strange Edwardian postcards, all of which feature babies.  Babies fished from rivers, babies hatching from eggs, babies growing in cabbage patches, babies playing instruments, babies riding cows, babies as flowers… It appears the genre began in Germany in the early twentieth century, […]

New York, New York!

New York, New York!

22nd October 2013

This is one of 200 copies signed by the artist (this being no. 141), out of a total edition of 500, of Hanns Welti’s rare suite of enormous lithographs of New York (575 × 470 mm), published in Zurich in 1927. Like the architect and sculptor Max Bill, Welti (1891–1934) belonged to the artistic new […]

Blood and laughter

Blood and laughter

21st May 2013

The boom years of 1890s Russia came to an abrupt halt at the turn of the century when an economic slump left many of the new urban working class jobless and led to unrest in the countryside.  The Tsar’s popularity took another knock when hopes of a quick military victory in the Russo-Japanese War (1904) […]

Frederick the Great writ small

Frederick the Great writ small

14th May 2013

A nineteenth-century drawing of Frederick the Great.  But look closer: every line of the picture is actually made up of words. Here’s one with a ruler, to give you an idea of the scale: This is an example of what’s called micrography, ‘the art of writing in microscopic characters’. My next challenge was to try […]

Hitler’s Olympics

Hitler’s Olympics

24th July 2012

These rather wonderful Olympia-Hefte were obviously conceived by Goebbels as a means of getting the German public behind the 1936 Berlin Games.  But they also serve to explain the history of various sports.  Parts 2–24 cover skiing, bobsleigh and ice hockey, ice skating, football, handball, hockey, running, pentathlon and decathlon, jumping, throwing, boxing, weightlifting and wrestling, […]