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Circular Paz

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Octavio Paz (1914-1998), Discos visuals (México: Ediciones Era, 1968). Edición de 1,000 ejemplares. Contents:, I. Juventud.—II. Pasaje.—III. Concorde.—IV. Aspa. Graphic Arts Collection (GAX), PQ7297.P285 D5

Octavio Paz (1914-1998) was an activist and a writer. During the 1960s, he served for six years as the Mexican ambassador in New Delhi before resigning in support of the student demonstrations at the 1968 Mexico City Olympics. His poem “The Shame of the Olympics” was translated by Mark Strand and published in the New York Review of Books.

That same year, Paz published the essay “Marcel Duchamp o el castillo de la pureza,” which was later translated by Donald Gardner and republished as “Marcel Duchamp, or the Castle of Purity.” His interest in concrete poetry and the role of chance in art led to experiments in graphic poetic devices. The visual artist Vicente Rojo helped Paz with the design of an edition of visual poetry discs, entitled Discos visuals.

These four overlapping cardboard circles, with openings top and bottom, can be turned in either direction revealing words and phrases written by Paz, creating poems by accidental combinations. Part scrabble and part Ouija board, these discs are now extremely rare.

The Oriental Album

Right: A Turkish Cavass (Police Officer)

Henry John Van-Lennep (1815-1889), The Oriental Album: Twenty Illustrations, in Oil Colors, of the People and Scenery of Turkey (New York: Anson D. F. Randolph, 1862). Purchased jointly with funds from the Program in Hellenic Studies and the Rare Books Division. Graphic Arts Collection (GAX) Oversize Z232.E56 .V36 1862f

Henry Van Lemmep traveled to Turkey as a missionary in 1840 and did not return to the United States for twenty years. After his retirement, he gathered all his drawings and had them printed by the lithographer Charles R. Parsons (1821-1910) and published by Anson D. F. Randolph (1820-1896) as The Oriental Album. “In terms of American color plate books, this is one of the only large projects from the 1860s, when the Civil War seems to have curtailed production of such lavish enterprises.”—William Reese

Parsons began as an apprentise to the artist George Endicott (1802-1848) at the age of twelve, learning first to draw and then to make lithographs. He became a partner at Endicott & Company, producing work for Currier & Ives, as well as Frank Leslie. At the age of forty-two, Parsons took over the art department at Harper’s on Franklin Square, where he hired the best young artists of that time. Later, Joseph Pennell wrote “the growth of real and vital American art started in the department of Mr. Parsons in Franklin Square.”

Gypsy Telling Fortune Albanian Guard

Turkish and Armenian Ladies


University of Rochester Memorial Art Gallery, Catalogue of an Exhibition of Portraitures of James McNeill Whistler ([Rochester, N.Y.] Priv. print., 1915). Graphic Arts: Reference Collection (GARF) ND237.W6 R6

The title page of this James McNeill Whistler (1834-1903) exhibition catalogue holds the collector’s mark, “From Whistleriana of Elmer Adler.” A further look reveals this is copy no. 1 of an edition of 130, printed on hand-made paper by the Craftsman press of Rochester, New York. Princeton’s volume is heavily extra-illustrated with mounted or tipped-in correspondence, prints, drawings, and photographs of the works in the exhibition.

The curator and major lender of the show was 34 year old Elmer Adler. In the early years of the 20th century, Adler was living in Rochester and well-known for his collecting interests. The local university art gallery tapped him several times to exhibit his holdings.

In 1915, Adler was asked to prepare an exhibition of portraits of the American artist J. M. Whistler, one part of his larger Whistleriana collection. What followed was a great deal of personal correspondence, research notes, and reproduction inquiries. When the show was complete and the catalogue printed, Adler gathered all the paperwork together and had it bound with the catalogue into one unique, extra-illustrated edition, now part of Princeton’s graphic arts collection.

Happy Anniversary Wm Blake

William Blake (1757-1827), Chaucer’s Canterbury Pilgrims, 10 August 1810. Engraving after tempera painting. Taylor collection GA 2008.01117

William Blake (1757-1827) had only one exhibition and received only one published review in his lifetime. We are celebrating the 200th anniversary of this 1809 show, held at 28 Broad Street (the same building where Blake was born) on the second floor above the family shop now run by his brother Robert. Six visitors paid 2s 6d to attended, including Robert Hunt, a reviewer from The Examiner, who wrote: “The poor man fancies himself a great master, having painted a few wretched pictures, blotted and blurred and very badly drawn … [Blake is] an unfortunate lunatic whose personal inoffensiveness secures him from confinement.”

For the show Blake wrote and published a Descriptive Catalogue, along with an index to the works in the exhibition. The title page reads (spelling is Blake’s) “In this Exhibition will be seen real Art, as it was left us by Raphael and Albert Durer, Michael Angelo and Julio Romano; stripped from the Ignorances of Rubens and Rembrandt, Titian and Correggio; By Wm Blake.” Happily, this ephemeral catalogue only known to most of us from notes in a history book, can now be seen in person at separate exhibitions in London and in Paris, or you can buy the reprint recently published by Tate Britain.

Blake’s purpose in mounting this poorly attended exhibition was to highlight his interpretation of Chaucer’s Canterbury Pilgrims, and prove the superiority of his work over the one exhibited in 1806 by publisher Robert Cromek and the artist Thomas Stothard. Blake had given Cromek the idea for a Chaucer print and was angry when a more commercial artist was chosen to accomplish it. Blake responded with both a tempera painting “Sir Jeffery Chaucer and the Nine and Twenty Pilgrims on their Journey to Canterbury” for the 1809 exhibition and in 1810, this engraving.

“Every age is a Canterbury Pilgrimage,” wrote Blake in his catalogue, “We all pass on, each sustaining one or other of these characters, nor can a child be born who is not one of these characters of Chaucer.”

Hamlet, the Song

Arthur Murphy (1727-1805), Hamlet [sheet music] (London: Goulding &D’Almaine, 1822?). Cover illustration by George Cruikshank (1792-1878). Graphic Arts (GA) Cruik 1822.45

British artist George Cruikshank is known for his caricatures, book illustrations, and oil paintings but he also designed sheet music. This song for voice and piano, based on the story of Hamlet is a good example (first and last pages shown here). The final verse goes:

So then he stabbed his liege,
Then fell on Ophy’s brother,
And so the Danish Court,
All tumbled one on t’other.
To celebrate these deeds,
Which are from no false shamlet,
Every Village small,
Hence-forth was called a Hamlet.

The Princeton University Library holds several dozen pieces of sheet music illustrated by Cruikshank. Here are a few:

William Hone (1780-1842), Great Gobble Gobble Gobble, and Twit Twittle Twit, or Law, Versus Common Sense: being a twitting report of successive attacks on a tom tit, his stout defenses & final victory: a new song with original music ([London]: Published by William Hone, [ca.1817]) Graphic Arts Collection (GA) Cruik 1818.36
The Song refers to William Hone, and the design represents a farmyard with the different characters engaged in the trial as domestic birds, notably Lord Ellenborough as a turkey and William Hone as a tom-tit.

Jacob Beuler, Tea in the Arbour; a Comic Song written by J. Beuler, and sung with great applause by Mr. Fitzwilliam (London: B. Williams [1819?]) Graphic Arts Collection (GA) Oversize Cruik 1819.9q

Jonathan Blewitt (1782-1853), Wery Ridiculous! Or, Fickle Miss Nicholas; a new comic song, sung by Mr. Keeley, at the Theatre Royal, Covent Garden. The words by Mr. Beuler … (London: Keith, Prowse & Co. [18—]) Graphic Arts Collection (GA) Oversize Cruik 18—q

George Colman (1762-1836), Barney Buntline and Billy Bowling, or, The Advantages of Being at Sea (London: Printed and published by Clementi, Collard & Collard, between 1822 and 1830]) Graphic Arts Collection (GA) Oversize Cruik 18—.99f

Dolly and the Rat, or, The Brisket Family: a burlesque, tragic, comic, operatic parody on The maid and magpie, with songs, &c. &c. in two acts … : now performing with acclamations of applause at the Olympic Theatre (London: Printed and published by Duncombe … 1823) Graphic Arts Collection (GA) Cruik 1823.27

Mathews in America, or, The Theatrical Wanderer: a cargo of new characters, original songs, and concluding piece of the Wild goose chase, or, The inn at Baltimore (London: Printed by & for Hodgson & Co. … [1823]) Graphic Arts Collection (GA) Cruik 1823.7

Charles Dibdin (1745-1814), Songs, Naval and National, of the Late Charles Dibdin; with a memoir and addenda (London: John Murray, 1841) Graphic Arts Collection (GA) Cruik 1841.3

Ye Occasional Idler!

John J. Corell, Ye Occasional Idler. A family paper published by an association of gentlemen containing controversial and practical matter articles of intelligence and miscellany (Mt Washington, Mass.: Corell Printer, 1932). First issue August 1932. Graphic Arts (GAX) 2009- in process


“Earnest appreciation of The Busy Idler, published here in August 1875 is our first thought and we are proud after fifty years to feel the same urge to unfurl again the banner of an “Idler”. We proclaim to the work-a-day world that our Township of Mt. Washington, the highest in the Commonwealth, still is noted for its salubrious substantiality flourishing as of yore with no debt, no paupers, no lawyers or dentists or doctors; no bank and, we really enjoy our occasional preacher.”

Also from the Corell Press, A Booke to Showe Certaine Goodlie Types for Printinge in Olde Style (Neu Amsterdam [i.e. New York]: Corell Press, 1900). “Ye Corell Press & ye Press of ye Classical School Associated Printers in ye olde style at Vniversity Place & Ninth Street in ye goodlie city of Neu Amsterdam.”—Colophon. Houghton Library, Harvard University

Prière de toucher (Please Touch)

Le Surréalisme en 1947 (Paris: Pierre à Feu, Maeght, 1947). Rare Books (Ex) N6490 .P21

We have a wonderful conservation staff here at Firestone Library, dedicated to the care and preservation of our rare books and special collections. As you might imagine, these materials can present uncommon problems that need unique solutions. One of our conservation technicians Nicole Dobrowolski, working under the assistant rare books conservator Jody Beenk, designed and constructed this housing for Le Surréalisme en 1947, the catalogue for the Exposition Internationale du Surréalisme at Galerie Maeght in Paris. The book was conceived by André Breton (1896-1966) and Marcel Duchamp (1887-1968) and produced in an edition of 999 copies. It is illustrated with eighteen lithographs, five etchings, and two woodcuts by such artists as Joan Miró, Max Ernst, Hans Bellmer, and others.

The trouble with the book is its cover, featuring a foam rubber breast glued onto black velvet. The design was a collaboration between Duchamp and Enrico Donati (1909-2008), working together in New York, while the book was being printed in Paris. When asked about the project, Donati said he purchased 999 falsies from a warehouse in Brooklyn and then, the two artists painted each one by hand and assembled them on cardboard covers. They liked the idea that the readers would have to handle the breast in order to get at the text so added a sticker to the back of the volume: Prière de toucher (Please touch).

However, it was this handling, along with the instability of the foam rubber, which caused the book’s damage. Our conservators needed to design a housing that would allow researchers to view the cover without handling it while still having complete access to the volume’s text. The solution was this beautifully constructed, multi-compartment clamshell box designed to fit each individual part of the book, case, and cover.

The Man Who Ate "Art and Culture"

John Latham (1921-2006), The Mechanical Bride by Marshall McLuhan, ca. 1969. Altered book. Gift of William Howard Adams. Graphic Arts GAX Oversize 2006-0384Q.

In 1966, conceptual artist John Latham (1921-2006) had a part-time teaching job at St. Martin’s School of Art in London. One day, he went to the school library and borrowed a copy of Clement Greenberg’s Art and Culture. Latham invited his students to participate in one of his “event-based” art works by chewing pages of the book into a pulp, which was then dissolved, distilled, and the fermented liquid sealed in several glass vials. When Latham received an overdue notice from the library, he attempted to return a vial (housed in a leather case, just like the book) but the librarian rejected it as unreadable. Latham’s teaching contract was not renewed but the artwork, entitled “Chew and Spit: Art and Culture,” was purchased by the Museum of Modern Art in New York City.

That same year, William Howard Adams met Latham, possibly through the Fluxus symposium at which Latham set fire to a tower of books outside the British Museum. Adams suggested Latham do something with Marshall McLuhan’s book The Mechanical Bride, and gave the artist a copy. Three years later, Latham returned the volume, altered and autographed. This “event-based” object was donated to the Princeton University Library’s graphic arts collection, where it can be seen today. Special thanks to Hannes Mandel for this discovery.

For more information on Latham, see John Albert Walker, John Latham: the Incidental Person (London: Middlesex University Press, 1995). Marquand library SA Oversize N6797.L37 W344 1995Q

International edible books festival, April 1 each year:

Sketches in France, Switzerland, and Italy

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Samuel Prout (1783-1852), Sketches in France, Switzerland, and Italy (London: Hodgson & Graves, [1839]). 26 tinted lithographs, GAX copy imperfect. Graphic Arts Collection (GAX) Oversize Rm 2-15-G, cabinet 33.

“It is not unlikely that the day may arrive when the connoisseur of a future age shall turn over the pages of a book, and pause upon an aquatinta print, with the same solemn delight as those of our day are wont to do upon a woodcut of Albrecht Dürer, an etching of Hollar, or a production of any ancient engraver.”

At the time Samuel Prout (1783-1852) wrote these words, aquatint prints had taken over English book illustration, dominating it from 1790 to 1830. The leading publishers, such as Rudolph Ackermann, maintained stables of artists who turned-out watercolor drawings, which were converted to black and white aquatints by master printers, hand colored by cheaper technicians. Samuel Prout worked for Ackermann and others as a watercolorist, specializing in picturesque views for armchair travelers.

Prout’s real interest lay in the newer technique of lithography, being one of the first English artists to perfect the process. In 1817, when Ackermann wrote an article praising lithography in his Repository of the Arts, it was Prout who illustrated the text with an original lithographic print.

As the audience grew for Prout’s topographical views, so did his geographic range. Prout made frequent trips across the continent of Europe, producing multiple series of tinted lithographs with hand-colored highlights. Most prints celebrate towering Gothic cathedrals and other romantic architectural views rendered with astonishing detail. This is one such set with views from France, Switzerland, and Italy.

Travels amongst the Todas

William Elliot Marshall, Lieutenant Colonel of Her Majesty’s Bengal Staff Corps, was an amateur ethnographer. He was introduced to the Todas people, who lived on the Nilgiri Hills in southern India, while on a furlough to Ooty. Although he did not speak their language, Marshall decided to study the small tribe in order to uncover physiognomic proof of their “primitive nature.”

His final report was published in two similar editions, one titled A Phrenologist amongst the Todas and the other Travels amongst the Todas or the Study of a Primitive Tribe in South India. Both are illustrated with 14 carbon prints from glass negatives. At least two of these plates are from the Simla photography firm Bourne & Shepherd (founded by British photographers Samuel Bourne 1834-1912 and Charles Shepherd) and printed by the Autotype Fine Art Company.

Bourne and Shepherd sold their business in 1870 and Bourne returned to England (although their stock of glass negatives remained in circulation for many years). The images of the Todas are clearly made from life and so, must have been taken a number of years before Marshall’s book was finally published in 1873.

William E. Marshall, Travels amongst the Todas, or The Study of a Primitive Tribe in South India (London: Longmans, Green, 1873) “A brief outline of the grammar of the Tuda language by the Rev. G.U. Pope … From a collection of Tuda words and sentences presented by the Rev. Friedrich Metz”: p. [239]-269. Graphic Arts Collection (GAX) 2006-2348N

For more information, see Kavita Philip, Civilizing Natures : Race, Resources, and Modernity in Colonial South India (New Brunswick, N.J.: Rutgers University Press, c2004). Firestone Library Q127.I4 P48 2004

Home and Haunts of Shakespeare


James Leon Williams (1852-1932), The Home and Haunts of Shakespeare (New York: C. Scribner’s sons, 1892) Graphic Arts (GAX) oversize 2009- in process

American born dentist Dr. James Leon Williams (1852-1932) moved to London in 1887. He spent summers in Stratford-on-Avon making photographs and printing the negatives as photogravures. In 1890, his first project matched these gravures with the poem “Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard” written by Thomas Gray (1716-1771). Boston publisher Joseph Knight brought it out in a small edition.

Two years later, Williams followed this with a massive folio entitled The Home and Haunts of Shakespeare published by Charles Scribner’s Sons in New York. Reproductions of 15 watercolors by 15 different American artists are completely overshadowed by Williams’ 45 pictorialist gravures. The New York Times published a review before the book was even finished, crediting Williams with reviving America’s interest in Shakespeare.

Henry Martin's Spots

Henry Martin, class of 1948, worked as a cartoonist and illustrator for more than forty-five years, publishing in the New Yorker, Ladies’ Home Journal, Saturday Evening Post, and many other magazines. He also had a single-panel comic strip, “Good News/Bad News,” which was nationally syndicated.

Martin had his first drawing accepted at the New Yorker in April 1950 but it was another ten years before his first cartoon was accepted there. It is, in fact, these drawings or “spots,” for which Martin is best represented in the magazine. A search of the New Yorker’s cartoon database reveals 188 cartoons but our archive of Martin’s drawings shows he made over 1,000 spots. These are the tiny drawings that fill the spaces above and below the stories, articles, and columns of the magazine.

In March of 2005, New Yorker editor David Remnick changed the handling of these spots (Martin was by then retired). The earlier spots Martin drew had no running narrative of their own; no connection with politics or current events or each other. They were visual poems living gloriously apart from daily life. This changed with the magazine’s 80th anniversary issue. The spots, now created by a series of artists, have their own narrative or running theme throughout an individual issue. This week, for instance, they are all about garbage.

We include a few here in the old style.

And one cartoon for good measure.

For some other Princeton University related Henry Martin cartoons, see:

For an extended commentary on the redesign of the New Yorker, see

Andy Warhol's "a is an alphabet"

Andy Warhol (1928-1987), a is an alphabet. Text by Ralph Thomas (Corkie) Ward. ([New York: Andy Warhol, 1953]). Graphic Arts GAX N7433.4.W37 A4 1969

Princeton University libraries hold two copies of this thin portfolio of 26 offset lithographs issued in a vellum paper cover with a typewritten label. The one in graphic arts was given by Warhol to then curator Gillett Griffin. It is one of a series of books and multiples Warhol printed from 1953 to 1959 as personal gifts. “[Each] month, he’d send art directors hand-finished work that looked for all the world like original art. He might, for example, mail out stamps of hand-colored butterflies. Or packages of birdseed, with instructions to plant the seeds and watch as they grew to become birds. Starting in 1953, the gifts became more elaborate. Warhol embarked on a series of privately printed books. In that year, he turned out four: Love is a Pink Cake, A is an Alphabet, A House That Went to Town, and There Was Rain in the Street.” Happily, Graphic Arts was on the Warhol mailing list and received copies of A is an Alphabet and Love is a Pink Cake.

For more information see Andy Warhol Prints by Jorg Schellmann, updated by Frayda Feldman, 2003. Marquand Library Oversize ND237.W16 F44 2003q

See also Love is a Pink Cake Graphic Arts GAX N7433.4.C67 A4 1969

Adler's Pynson Printers Photographed by Ralph Steiner

Born in Rochester N.Y., Elmer Adler (1884-1962) reluctantly joined the family clothing business as advertising manager and designer. In his spare time, he collected books and taught himself the importance of great typography, paper, and binding. In 1920, the Rochester Memorial Art Gallery opened an exhibition entitled “The History of the Art of Printing,” curated by Adler primarily from his own collection (catalogue available full-text on google).

Less than two years later, Adler packed up his books and moved to New York City where he organized a printing company of his own, The Pynson Printers. As a long-time member of The Stowaways, a private club for men involved in graphic arts, he was already acquainted to many of the leading printers and publishers in New York. His friend Arthur Hays Sulzberger (1891-1968), son-in-law and heir to the publisher of The New York Times, invited Adler to move the business into the spacious new Times Annex at 229 West 43rd street. Adler’s rooms consisted of a printing shop with three presses, a library, an exhibition gallery (opened to the public in 1938), and offices elegant enough to hold afternoons teas for his colleagues. He was proud to say “in the eighteen years of its existence Pynson Printers charged more than any other shop in the country and never made a profit.”

These photographs of Adler’s rooms at 43rd Street were taken by Ralph Steiner (1899-1986). The year Adler moved to NYC, Steiner had graduated from Dartmouth and was finishing an extra year studying at the Clarence White School of Photography. Steiner got a job making photogravure plates at the Manhattan Photogravure Company, until he had enough commissions to work as a freelance advertising photographer.

It is no wonder Adler chose Steiner. Considered one of the best modern art photographers of the period, Steiner worked primarily in advertising photography, in a precisionist style. Adler thought so much of Steiner’s work that he gave the artist an exhibition in the Pynson gallery in 1930.

Steiner began moving into film in the late 1920s, first with the avant-garde short H2O edited by Aaron Copeland (available through the media lab or online through Youtube. This was followed by Redes/The Waves with Paul Strand; Pie in the Sky with Elia Kazan; and The Plow that Broke the Plains with Strand and Pare Lorentz. Two years later, Steiner and Willard Van Dyke founded American Documentary Films and collaborated on The City, shown to acclaim at the 1939 New York World’s Fair.

In 1940, Adler and Steiner both left New York; Adler for Princeton University and Steiner for Hollywood.

McCormick Balloon Print Collection

Paul Pry (pseudonym for William Heath 1795-1840), March of Intellect, 1828. Etching with hand coloring. GC014 box 7

James Gillray (1757-1815), The National Parachute or John Bull Conducted to Plenty & Emancipation, 1802. Etching with hand coloring. GC014 box 7

Artist unknown, The Montgolfier, A First Rate of the French Aerial Navy, 1783. Etching with hand coloring. GC014 box 7

On January 3, 1966, The New York Times reported:

An aeronautical collection of more than 400 items that span the decades from the fire balloons of the seventeen-hundreds to the prop-driven planes of the nineteen thirties has been given to Princeton University.

The collection of prints, correspondence, photographs, and models was assembled by Harold Fowler McCormick during the early decades of this century. It was given to Princeton by Alexander Stillman of Chicago, a relative of the McCormick family.

Mr. McCormick, the son of Cyrus McCormick, the founder of the International Harvester Company, and a member of the Princeton Class of 1895, died in 1941.

The McCormick collection begins with a series of letters written by the 18th-century balloonist, Etienne Montgolfier, and ends with memorabilia of the collector’s own career in aviation.

Mr. McCormick’s interest in aviation stemmed from a meeting with the Wright brothers in France in the summer of 1908. He took his first flight two years later, and in 1911, helped organize the First International Aviation Meet, held at Grant Park, Ill.

In 1913, he became one of the earliest communters by air when he used a Curtiss hydroplane to travel between his home in Lake Forest, Ill, and Chicago. He named the craft Edith after his wife, the former Edith Rockefeller.

N. Louis, Le voyage aerien: grande valse triomphale, (Philadelphia: A. Fiot, 1844-1849?) printed music. GC014 box 7

An article about the gift in the Princeton University Library Chronicle, 27, no. 3 (spring 1966): 143+ is available full text:

More description of the entire collection can be found at

For information on the McCormick-Romme ‘Umbrella’ airplane, see

Ralph Barton

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Figure 1

Figure 2

In 1924, Ralph Waldo Emerson Barton (1891-1931) was asked to serve as an advisory editor to Harold Ross for his new magazine The New Yorker, along with Marc Connelly, George Kaufman, Rea Irvin, Alice Duer Miller, Dorothy Parker, and Alexander Woollcott. These artists and writers were expected to contribute material to be printed anonymously, in exchange for stock, while retaining rights for reprints themselves. In one week alone, in the late 1924s, Barton completed eighty-five drawings. He was at the height of his career and one of the highest paid artists working in New York City. His drawings are, for many, synonymous with the 1920s.

Hundreds, if not thousands, of Barton’s drawings were published unsigned and few survive in their original format. Besides The New Yorker, he worked for Collier’s, The Delineator, Everybody’s magazine, Harper’s Bazaar, Hearst’s International, Judge, Leslie’s Weekly, Liberty, New York Herald Tribune, Photoplay, Puck, Satire, Shadowland, Vanity Fair, and many more. He illustrated many books, including Droll Stories by Honoré de Balzac, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes and But Gentlemen Marry Brunettes by Anita Loos, The Tattooed Countess by Carl Van Vechten, and his own God’s Country. He also made one film, at the urging of his friend Charlie Chaplin, entitled Camille: The Fate of a Coquette, starring Paul Robeson, Sinclair Lewis, George Jean Nathan, Theodore Dreiser, Sherwood Anderson, Alfred Knopf, Ethel Barrymore, Somerset Maugham, and many of his other friends.

The drawings in the Graphic Arts Division were published in Judge under the section “Judge’s Rotogravure section; The News of the Globe in Pictures by Ralph Barton”. They are not included in any published listing of Barton’s work. We can only assume they are from the 1920s.

When Barton shot himself in 1931, he left two notes. The first, titled “Obit,” was an explanation of his suicide, which he attributed to melancholia. Barton wrote, “No one thing is responsible for this and no one person—except myself. If the gossips insist on something more definite and thrilling as a reason, let them choose my pending appointment with the dentist or the fact that I happened to be painfully short of cash at the moment.” The second note was to his housekeeper, leaving her $35 and an apology that it was all he had left.

John Updike (1932-2009) selected only a few, favorite artists to write about in The New Yorker, later republished in Just Looking, and one was Ralph Barton. “Barton’s caricatures are not idignant, like Daumier’s, or frenzied, like Gerald Scarfe’s,” he wrote, “they are decoratively descriptive.” Then, Updike quoted Barton speaking of his own work, “It is not the caricaturist’s business to be penetrating; it is his job to put down the figure a man cuts before his fellows in his attempt to conceal the writhings of his soul.”

Later, in a foreword to Bruce Kellner’s biography on Barton, Updike wrote

“In the fury of his life and career Barton was careless of his work; most of his originals are lost, destroyed by him or by the engravers whose indifferent, coarsely screened reproductions are all we have left. …A lost Manhattan and a lost decade live again in the particulars of Barton’s hectic career. The life was less happy than it should have been, considering its achievement; the best of Barton’s art is like a perfect flower, wiry and fluent, blooming in the wilderness of his era’s commercial art.”

Bruce Kellner, The Last Dandy, Ralph Barton: American Artist, 1891-1931 (Columbia: University of Missouri Press, c1991) Firestone Library (F) NC139.B36 K45 1991

John Updike (1932-2009), Just Looking: Essays on Art (New York: Knopf; Distributed by Random House, 1989) Rare Books (Ex) N71 .U64 1989

Figure 3

Figure 4

Fig. 1: Ralph Barton (1891-1931), The News of the Globe in Pictures (Judge, no date). Pen and ink, wash on paper. Frame 1—4,000 miles of 20-inch reinforced rubber tubing. Frame 2—Mss Carrie Wardrobe. Frame 3—Training polo ponies at Meadowbrook. Frame 4—Silent Cal. Frame 5—Mis Gloria Swanson. Frame 6—Device to let rooms on courts at seaside hotels. Graphic Arts division GA 2006.02584

Fig. 2: Ralph Barton (1891-1931), The News of the Globe in Pictures (Judge, July 12, 192?). Pen and ink, wash on paper. Frame 1—Water sprites at a limpid woodland pool. Frame 2—William Jennings Bryan. Frame 3—A modern Jean Bart. Frame 4—Senatorial entries. Frame 5—Staunch champion of the principles of democracy. Frame 6—Playtime for Americans in Europe. Graphic Arts division GA 2006.01928

Fig. 3: Ralph Barton (1891-1931), The News of the Globe in Pictures (Judge, May 31, 192?). Pen and ink, wash on paper. Frame 1—College prexy in hot water; Dr. Nicholas Murray Butler, of Columbia University being pressed by reporters to back up his recent allegation that several congressmen habitually appear on the floor of the House sober enough to stand alone. Frame 2—The blessings of liberty at the White House; Though denied the ecstasy of shaking their President by the hand, a new ruling at the executive mansion still permits 1,450,000 citizens daily to feast their eyes on him as he works at his desk. Frame 3—Crazy Ik, village idiot of Pt. Barrow, Alaska; said to be the only American citizen who still believes that the Income Tax will be reduced. Frame 4—Borrowing an idea from Hollywood; William Gibbs McAdoo carries a small orchestra as a part of his touring equipment to aid him in working himself up to the proper emotional pitch to make his campaign speeches more effective. Frame 5—Joseph Hergesheimer, Carl Van Vechten, and James Branch Cabell; The only American authors who have never acted in amateur theatricals, honor the bust of Joseph Conrad, the only British author who has never lectured in America. Frame 6—The latest in feminism; New York’s police commissioner, Richard Enright (left) welcomes “Copperette” Sarah Jones (right) head of the Liverpool policewomen who has gone her London sister-officer one better in smart turn-outs by raising a mustache. Graphic Arts division GA 2006.01927

Fig. 4: Ralph Barton (1891-1931), Camera Shots by Ralph Barton (Judge, April 12, 192?). Pen and ink, wash on paper. Frame 1—Reincarnation of Sappho? Sadie Snipt, whose dance recitals have startled Omaha, claims the Greek poetess is re-born in her. Frame 2—America’s premiere showman again turns to Europe for talent; Morris Gest signs the Prince of Wales for eight matinees of his great equestrian act at Madison Square Garden. Frame 3—A gift for the president; Calvin Coolidge receives a mother-of-pearl colander full of brass cole-slaw from an admirer. Frame 4—In training for the White House; Wm.G. McAddo, in Apring Training Camp, learning to throw out the first ball of the season. Frame 5—Playtime at the Capital; Senators and Representatives enjoy a few letters from constituents demanding Income Tax reduction. Frame 6—Notable gathering of leading American reformers; Photographed at a banquet given last month to celebrate Anthony Comstock. Graphic Arts division GA 2009.00076

American Sunday School Union

Unpublished album containing 1000 wood engravings. Graphic Arts Collection (GAX) Oversize Hamilton 1674q

This album holds a collection of wood engravings used in books published by the American Sunday School Union (ASSU) of Philadelphia. Judging from the dates which occasionally occur, the period covered is from the early 1820s to 1831. All the cuts have been carefully organized chronologically and numbered in pen. Over 70 are by George Gilbert, along with designs by Reuben S. Gilbert, Christian F. Gobrecht (1785-1844), Alexander Anderson (1775-1870), and John Warner Barber (1798-1885).

This is book one of two volumes. The second album, beginning with 1831, is held by the Library Company of Philadelphia. Special thanks go to their rare book curator Cornelia King for her research on these sample books.

The ASSU was founded in 1824 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to promote early literacy and spiritual development of children, teaching them to read through the use of booklets published by the Union. The ASSU continued its publication program until l960 and some time later changed its name to the American Missionary Fellowship, which is how we know them today. Although the publications were meant to be nondenominational, many of the images tell biblical stories with a conservative leaning. No. 608 shows Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden with a note below: "Not to be used unless clothed."

The Well-Equipped Printing Shop

Johann Heinrich Gottfried Ernesti (1664-1723), Die wol-eingerichtete Buchdruckerey: mit hundert und achtzehen teutsch-, lateinisch-, griechisch-, und hebräischen Schrifften, vieler fremden Sprachen Alphabeten, musicalischen Noten, Calender-Zeichen, und medicinischen Characteren, ingleichen allen üblichen Formaten bestellet… (Nürnberg: Gedruckt und zu finden bey Johann Andreä Endters seel. Sohn und Erben, 1721). Graphic Arts Collection (GAX) Oversize 2006-0269Q

This German printers’ manual describes an early 18th-century printing office. The shop, first owned by Michael Endter (fl. 1653-1662) and his family, was purchased by Johann Ernesti in 1717. As seen in the engraved frontispiece, Ernesti had two working presses. One is engraved with the dated 1440, for the beginning of printing, and the other 1730, to signify the printing of this issue of the manual. Nine men are working inside the shop setting the type, proofreading the copy, and printing the pages.

The manual begins with thirteen biographies and engraved portraits of early printers, including Laurens Janszoon Koster (ca. 1370-ca. 1440), Johannes Gutenberg (ca. 1398-1468), Johann Fust (ca. 1400-1466), Aldus Manutius (1449/1450-1515), Christophe Plantin (ca. 1520-1589), among others.

Over one hundred type specimens are introduced, including 47 Black Letter, 21 Roman, 14 Italic types, as well as Slavic, Greek, and Hebrew fonts. In addition, there are special calendar symbols, astrological signs, and engraved music fonts.

Contributions to Ornithology

Sir William Jardine (1800-1874), Drawings for Contributions to Ornithology, no date. Index to plates inserted. Graphic Arts division GC025

This two volume scrapbook contains 131 leaves of mounted drawings, pattern plates for the colorist, and uncolored proof impressions compiled by the Scottish naturalist William Jardine for his five volume Contributions to Ornithology. The project followed directly after his hugely popular 40 volume Naturalist Library published in 1843 (GAX 2007-0067N), which established his position in Victorian society and his reputation as an ornithologist.

Contributions was issued in parts from 1848 to 1852 and is considered the first British periodical devoted to ornithology. Jardine meant the series to be an annual updating of the latest ornithological information. It was a family project with Jardine as principal organizer, artist, and author. His daughter Catherine Strickland executed many of the plates and his other daughter Helen did some drawing. Other contributors included T.C. Eyton, John Gould, and Philip Sclater.

For more information, see Christine Elisabeth Jackson and Peter Davis, Sir William Jardine: a Life in Natural History (London: Leicester University Press, 2001) Annex B, Fine Hall, QH31.J37 J23 2001

Rules and Examples of Perspective Proper

Andrea Pozzo (1642-1709), Rules and Examples of Perspective Proper for Painters and Architects, etc. in English and Latin: Continuing a Most Easy and Expeditious Method to Delineate in Perspective all Designs Relating to Architecture, After a New Manner Wholly Free from the Confusion of Occult Lines… (London: Printed by Benj. Motte: Sold by John Sturt …, 1707). Graphic Arts Collection (GAX) Oversize 2007-0007F

Andrea Pozzo was a remarkable Italian painter and architect of the Baroque period. Known for his frescoes using illusionist perspective, Pozzo’s most dramatic work can be found in Rome in the painting of the dome, apse, and ceiling of the Church of S. Ignazio (1685-1694). As this project was being completed, Pozzo wrote down instructions for his particular technique of perspective in a manual entitled Perspectiva pictorum et architectorum, published in 1693.

As one of the earliest manuals on perspective for artists and architects, the book went through many editions and translations, from the original Latin and Italian into French, German, English, and, Chinese. The text was noted for the clarity and the precision of its explanations of perspective, making it accessible to architects and artists alike. A cherished volume in any library, Pozzo’s book has been called “the most elaborate and expensive architectural book ever produced ….”

The first English edition came in 1707 under the title Rules and Examples of Perspective Proper…, translated by the architect John James (ca. 1672-1746) and published by Benjamin Motte Sr. (died 1710). This edition has over one hundred folio engravings along with 208 historiated initials John Sturt (1658-1730). 161 subscribers are listed on an engraved plate bound into the final book, including many prominent artists, architects, printers, businessmen, and politicians.

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