Friday, January 6, 2012

Here's to a fruitful 2012!

Well, with the holidays winding down, I'm back at the computer scanning, scanning, scanning. These beautiful chromolithographs from the 1905 and 1909 U.S. Department of Agriculture yearbooks seemed a fitting start to the year. I plucked them from the attic for a new collage series I'm about to start.

Just as now, the antique and vintage yearbooks make fascinating reading, and are full of all kinds of research, charts, tables, etc. But - you guessed it - it's the pictures that interest me.

The USDA hired 21 artists from 1886 to 1942 to create images for its bulletins, yearbooks and other publications. Here's the cool thing: its National Agriculture Library has archived 7,584 of the paintings, lithographs and drawings. Wait. Here's the other cool thing: it sells high-quality reprints and - get this - part of sale proceeds go toward conservation of the collection. How cool is that? Find out more here.    

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