Art can be interpreted many ways, from early book illustration to fine prints and etchings, oil paintings, original drawings developing into three-dimensional objects. This Exhibit explores the simplistic concept that “Every Picture Tells a Story” where imagery in art, sculpture and illustration have an inherent narrative to share – beginning with 120 full-page fantasy woodcuts filled with grotesque and irreverent caricatures (1565) to an exquisite series of colored engraved Trades and Professions (1690s) where every merchant is anatomically composed of the wares they represent in the style of Italian painter Giuseppe Arcimboldo. Included is a very rare broadside (1700) illustrating the earliest known image of a rare books auction. Each design gradually develops into a captured moment in time where one can experience movement and action whether it be an original ink drawing, watercolor, etching, oil or sculpture.
Not on the market for nearly forty years, from a private collection we offer Honoré Daumier’s drawing of a sideshow Fat Lady and Saltimbanque (ca. 1865), also several watercolor maquettes by Sir William Nicholson for his famous sporting woodblock series (1896), gouache paintings by the son of Lafcadio Hearn picturing his father’s ghost stories (ca. 1904), also a rare Maurice Sendak etching of a Wild Thing under a moonlit landscape (1980) and a self-portrait by Paul Cadmus sketching his model Jon Anderson (ca. 1986). The 1878 first printing of James McNeill Whistler’s “Composition in Grey and Black No. 1”) is signed in pencil by both the artist and the printer, shown alongside a complete set of 14 prints by Maxfield Parrish (1897) for his only lifetime limited signed edition (one of 27 copies).
Sculptures include a 1915 portrait of Vincent Van Gogh by Joseph Mendes da Costa, Robert Tait McKenzie’s bronze “Competitor” (1906), Aristede Maillol’s model of a youth (1930), a discus thrower in Rosenthal blanc-de-chine porcelain (1930s), Richmond Barthe’s seldom seen “Quo Vadis” (1951), Leonard Baskin’s 1955 bronze head of William Blake and William Steig’s unique hand-carved wooden “Timid Man”.
This show deals with storytelling in its many forms, referencing the proverbial picture is worth a thousand words, and its themes are limited only to the imagination of the viewer and the inspiration of the artist. Enjoy this journey and experience its many interpretations.