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Articles on this Page
- 11/29/18--01:00: _Edwin Davenport: An...
- 12/03/18--01:00: _New Book About Hadd...
- 12/06/18--01:00: _Louis Denis-Valvéra...
- 12/10/18--01:00: _Brangwyn in San Fra...
- 12/13/18--01:00: _Superferry Supergra...
- 12/03/18--01:00: New Book About Haddon Sundblom
- 12/10/18--01:00: Brangwyn in San Francisco
- 12/13/18--01:00: Superferry Supergraphics
Biographical information for the illustrator Edmund Davenport must be someplace, but I can't seem to find it by Googling. Nor can I find it in my personal collection of books about illustration.
All I know for sure at this point is that most of the internet images of his work date from 1925-1928. These works include some Saturday Evening Post covers, so Davenport briefly was hitting the big time.
Besides the Post, he did covers for other magazines and advertising art for Stutz automobiles and Syracuse China (the latter not shown below).
Here are most of the examples of his work that I could find.
New graduate literally "on top of the world."
The Elks are an American fraternal organization.
This advertisement and the ones below feature simplified backgrounds and contra-jour shading that serve to set off the images of the cars.
Stutz is best remembered for its Stutz Bearcat sports cars from the 1910s.
A black & white ad, but the artwork might have been done in color like the ones shown above (though the contra-jour is missing, suggesting it was done in b&w) .
Haddon Sundblom (1899-1976) was a leading illustrator for many years and influential in the careers of other illustrators.
Now Dan Zimmer of Illustration Magazine has written a lavishly illustrated book about him (information here). I am quite pleased with it. Some books on illustrators lack details regarding their subjects because illustrators, like many writers, can live somewhat isolated lives due to the nature of their work. Sundblom ran a commercial art studio in Chicago, so there were many people around him that could provide stories. Also, he was quoted in interviews, which helped Zimmer to provide a more rounded portrait than he was able to do in some other cases.
For a quick take on Sundblom, his Wikipedia entry is here.
I posted about him here on 27 February 2012 and here on 8 June 2011. In the latter post, I stated:
"Yet something bothers me just enough that I can't place Sundblom with contemporaries such as Dean Cormwell, John La Gatta and Mead Schaeffer. Maybe it had to do with stereotyping or pigeonholing by clients and art directors. Perhaps it was Sundblom's preference. In any event, the result was that little of his work had drama or "bite" of any kind."
Some of the illustrations in the book invalidate what I thought back in 2011. Sundblom was quite able to paint in styles other than the buttery sort that he is best known for. Some examples are below.
Haddon Sundblom was really good.
Louis Denis-Valvérane (1870-1943) was a Provençal painter and illustrator/cartoonist who is perhaps best known for his racy (at the time) cartoons in the magazine La vie Parisienne that he signed as Vald'Es.
Biographical information on him is almost non-existent on the Internet. Very brief items are here and here. A web site devoted to him is here. It is in French and contains a little more information, but mostly mentions aspects of Provençal nationalism.
Denis-Valvérane's paintings found on the Web tend to be somewhat mediocre in my opinion, but some of his cartoon work strikes me as being very good. Examples of each are shown below.
A scene from Denis-Valvérane's home town.
The man's shirt and hands are done well.
Frank Brangwyn (1867-1956), Wikipedia entry here, was British artist whose paintings and murals have always fascinated me. My post on those aspects of his work is here.
Aside from his unfortunate set of murals in New York's Radio City that I wrote about here, concentrations of Brangwyn's work are rare in the United States and mostly off the usual tourist track. However, it turns out that there are some Brangwyn's in another major American city.
A few months ago I was in San Francisco on a dinner-date-plus-piano-concert and stumbled across a Brangwyn trove I was totally unaware of -- a set of eight large murals in the auditorium of the War Memorial building in the Civic Center district. At first, I thought they might have been done by him, and later confirmed this via an Internet search.
It happened that they were commissioned for the 1915 Panama Pacific International Exposition and later installed in the auditorium as noted on page 34 of this book:
"The rest of the fair's public art was not dispersed as widely as the contents of the art pavilions. Having been executed on removable canvas, most of the murals were saved and turned over to the Trustees of the San Francisco War Memorial in the hope that they could be installed in other public buildings (Brangwyn's murals were eventually installed in the War Memorial Herbst Theatre, which was completed in 1932, while the others were placed in storage)."
Further research on the Internet revealed that the murals were displayed at the Court of Abundance at the exposition. Their themes were the Classical elements Earth, Air, Fire and Water. Two murals were painted for each theme.
I took some iPhone snapshots of the murals as an aide-memoir, assuming that I'd be able to find better examples on the Internet. Alas, it turns out that I found nothing really satisfactory, so the images below are of mural fragments taken from odd angles. Nevertheless, I hope you will find them interesting.
First, two images I found on the Internet showing the general arrangement.
Now for a collection of my snapshots (click on them to enlarge) ...
Large ferryboats carrying cars and passengers on comparatively long overnight runs are common in the Mediterranean and Baltic sea areas in Europe and in parts of Asia, though not in North America where most ferries simply cross rivers, narrow straits and harbors.
A few years ago I took one such ferry from Palermo in Sicily to Naples. It had a small, but adequate cabin and public areas to visit when not in the cabin. Being an overnight trip, no serious sightseeing or business time was lost. Very convenient.
I recently was on a cruise that covered, among other things, the Tyrrhenian Sea part of the Mediterranean (it's bounded by Italy, Sicily, Sardinia and Corsica).
From the cruise ship in several ports I saw that ferries of the Tirrenia line are being repainted using supergraphic images of American superhero comic book and movie cartoon figures.
Take a look:
Other ferries carry images of Batman and Wonder Woman.