Paul Weber. “Philadelphia/ View from Peters Farm.”
Philadelphia: William Smith, ca. 1870. 12 1/2 x 22 3/4 (image). Steel engraving by John Serz. Full hand color. Repaired tear just into image left hand side. Else, very good condition. Framed. A/A
A completely charming panorama of the city of Philadelphia by one of the most successful of the city’s 19th-century artists. John Serz came from Bavaria, to New York City, to Philadelphia in about 1850. He stayed in Philadelphia until his death, and during that 25 or so year period he engraved a number of historical plates along with numerous subjects of local interest. This well realized view is a fine example of his appealing and orderly images of the city. We are drawn into the breathtaking scene by an engaging family of mother, father, little daughter, and dog gazing out appreciatively in the foreground. The view from the Belmont plateau ahead of us moves from the lovely winding Schuylkill to the Philadelphia skyline stretching gently across the scene and Girard College looming up impressively to the left. The delicate detailing along with the soft color complete what is an unusually decorative as well as informative historical view of the city.