Monday, April 23, 2012
It's a surreal world, after all
Sometimes, I buy a book for one image. That's the case here. I was in an antique shop in South Jersey last month and spotted a small book with beautiful, gilded lettering on its dark green cover. "Little Stay-at-home and her friends." I was thinking that the book cover might be something I could work with. Then, I opened it to the page with the lithograph above - "The Baby On the Beach." Sold.
The book - a series of poems about animals, fairies and flowers that, I think, was intended for preschoolers, that is, little stay-at-homes - was written and illustrated by L. Clarkson and published by Philadelphia's F.W. Robinson & Co. in 1879. Clarkson is touted on the title page as the author of "Gathering of the Lilies" and "Violet, with Eyes of Blue." I'm on the hunt for those, because if the illustrations are as surreal as these, well, I'll be snapping them up.
The two illustrations below are already being put to use in a new series of collages. I have high-resolution scans of all the prints, just in case I come up with some other idea for them.