Augustus Köllner. “Merchants Exchange.” From Views of American Cities.
New York & Paris: Goupil, Vibert & Co., 1848. 8 x 11 1/2. Lithograph by Isidore-Laurent Deroy. Printed by Cattier. Original hand color. Print has been backed with archival paper. Else, very good condition. Deak: 560. A/A
Augustus Theodore Frederick Adam Köllner, born in Wurttenberg in 1812, worked as an artist, engraver and lithographer in Stuttgart and Paris before emigrating to America in 1839. Köllner settled in Washington where he continued as a professional draftsman and also began to make drawings of American scenery.
In 1840 he moved to Philadelphia, meeting P.S. Duval, who hired Köllner to draw illustrations for Duval and Hoddy’s U.S. Military Magazine. Köllner achieved considerable success in Philadelphia as a lithographic artist, producing a wide range of prints, including trade cards, labels, and illustrations.
From his earliest days in the United States, Köllner traveled around the country making scenic drawings of his adopted land, including a number of views of Philadelphia. Goupil, Vibert & Co. arranged to publish a series of Köllner’s views beginning in 1848. Despite Köllner’s ability as a lithographer, the New York and Paris publisher had the prints both lithographed and printed in Paris. Fifty four prints were made, including this and six other views of Philadelphia. These views illustrate Köllner’s fluent artistic style. In a manner similar to Birch, Wild, and others, Köllner focused on Philadelphia’s street life, providing a realistic immediacy and another delightful series of Philadelphia views.