Benezit cites Edouard-Louis Dubufe's (1820-1883) triptych, oil on canvas as located in New York in 1887. The painting was in the collection of A.T. Stewart. Sale of the painting was no doubt spurred by the appearance of this fine and large engraving based on the painting which was probably done in Paris. See: DeCourcy E. McIntosh's "New York's Favorite Pictures in the 1870s" in The Magazine Antiques (April, 2004) illus. p. 118.
The central panel shows the prodigal son drinking, wenching and gambling, while the left panel shows him among the swine (of a different sort) and the right panel welcomed back by his forgiving father. The popularity of pictures from Europe, especially from Paris, was the most popular in New York. Sales were greater than for those of other countries--even works by American artists. $800
HEDLEY FITTON. (1859-1929)
LUCIEN GAUTIER. (1850-1924).
Printmaker, romantic painter, portraitist, chronicler of his times, Goya (1746-1828) has often been heralded as both the final "Old Master" and the first "Modernist."
Before Los Caprichos, however, he was seen as simply one of the court painters of King Carlos IV. While suffering serious illness in the early 1790s (often thought to be the disease of the inner ear known as Ménière's), Goya read much on the contemporary French Revolution and was inspired by Rousseau, anathema to Spanish civil and clerical society. Recovered, but nearly deaf, Goya had become bitter, secretive and subdued.
From this attitude arose the 80-image series of which this print was #6. The subjects of the series are foolish humans, witches, goblins and the like. The artist explained in this number's text: "The world is a masquerade. Face, dress and voice, all are false. All wish to appear what they are not, all deceive and do not know even themselves."
Although Goya had planned to publish three hundred bound copies of the set, only about twenty full, bound copies were ever published, as the market just was not there. However, individual prints and gossip about them spread more widely. Los Caprichos had two consequences. First, Goya was established as a famed artist. Second, due to the theme of the prints -- as well as to the broad guessing game played as to just which high ranking members of society were being criticized and lampooned -- the artist ran afoul of many influential persons who could threaten his livelihood or even his life. Accordingly, the king protected Goya by requiring that extant copies and the copper plates be turned over to him.
Interestingly, the plates were preserved in Madrid's Calcografia Nacional (the museum devoted to engravings), and later impressions were made from the plates between 1855 and 1937. Thus, while we can know that this print was pressed from a Goya plate, we cannot know exactly when the impression was made. $225
The son of the German poet Friedrich Von Heyden, August Jakob Theodor Von Heyden (1827-1897) studied art under Steffeck at the Berlin Academy in 1860 and 1861. He then left for Paris to study under both Gleyre and Couture, remaining in Paris for about six years, where most of his original etchings were made. After returning to Berlin, Von Heyden regularly exhibited at German salons. In 1873 his art won a medal in Vienna, and in 1885 he assumed the post of Professor of Art at the Berlin Academy.
Alfred Cadart (1828-1875) was a Parisian publisher and purveyor of prints who joined in a business partnership in 1863 with painter Jules Joseph Luquet (b. 1824). In 1862 Cadart founded the Société des Aqua-Fortistes. Until its demise in 1867, the Societe was responsible for publishing some of the greatest French art from this important decade, which bore the Cadart and Luquet imprint. Cadart and Luquet then continued to commission original etchings from such masters as Jongkind, Bracquemond, Manet, Ribot and many others. Almost all of the fine etchings published by Cadart were printed by Auguste Delatre.
Auguste Delatre (1822-1907), was recognized as the most gifted French printer-etcher of his era. His influence upon the course of creative etching was significant. The artists who requested him to print their impressions included Jean Baptiste Camille Corot, Adolph Appian, James McNeill Whistler, Charles Meryon, Seymour Haden, Theodule Augustin Ribot, Charles Daubigny, Felicien Rops, Charles Jacque and Felix Bracquemond. In their collaborative efforts, Cadart and Delatre were thus responsible for creating some of the greatest original etchings of the nineteenth century.
This print is interesting not only for its depiction of Polish Jews of the time period but for the mining activities that are taking place in the background. $200
MORTIMER MENPES. (1855-1938)
MALCOLM OSBOURNE. (1880-1963)
CHARLES PINET. (1867-1932)
This strong impression of an elderly man dozing or sleeping is one of a number of portraits by Dutch artist Rembrandt (1606-1669). $1,600
Rubezahl is the mountain spirit, giant or gnome of the Giant Mountains, along the border between Poland and the Czech Republic. He is the subject of many legends and fairy tales, principally in German folklore. With good people he is friendly, he teaches medicine and gives presents. If someone derides him, however, his revenge is severe. He sometimes plays the role of a trickster in folk tales. $450
Reproductive prints are not "reproductions," rather, they are restrikes which have to be evaluated on a variety of standards. Some exist in many copies over a long time, but others while printed later are the only surviving images by some of the Old Masters.
Peter Paul Rubens (1577-1640) was one of the great painters of Renaissance religious art. Lucas Emil Vorsterman (1595-1675) practiced engraving in Envers (Flemish School) and worked closely with Rubens and his work. The engravings circulated throughout Europe and those of this popular and familiar scene were produced in large quantities. So while the price is "reasonable," the quality and history are superb and important. $400
Of French artist Eugène Véder (1876-1936) little is known. Essentially an artist of the 1920s, he became a member of the Salon des Artistes Français, exhibiting with them from 1922 on and receiving a bronze medal in 1923 and a silver medal in 1925.
Albert Morancé was Véder's chief patron. The etchings he published in the work which included this one - all printed by the artist on his own hand press - have been called among the finest artistic records of the city of Paris. $200
©The Philadelphia Print Shop, Ltd. Last updated March 6, 2018