Saturday, December 12, 2009

Currier And Ives Lithographs.


Currier and Ives lithographs depicted a variety of images of American life, including winter scenes; horse-racing images; portraits of people; and pictures of ships, sporting events, patriotic and historical events, including ferocious battles of the American Civil War, the building of cities and railroads, and Lincoln's assassination.

The original lithographs shared similar characteristics in inking and paper, and adhered to folio sizes. Sizes of the images were standard (trade cards, very small folios, small folios, medium folios, large folios), and their measurement did not include the title or borders. These sizes are one of the guides for collectors today in determining if the print is an original or not. "Currier used a cotton based, medium to heavy weight paper depending on the folio size for his prints until the late 1860’s. From about 1870, Currier & Ives used paper mixed with a small amount of wood pulp." In addition, Currier’s inking process resembled a mixture of elongated splotches and dashes of ink with a few spots, a characteristic that modern reproductions would not possess.

"In 1907 when the firm was liquidated most of the lithographic stones had the image removed and were sold by the pound with some stones final home as land fill in Central Park. Those few stones that managed to survive intact were of large folio Clipper Ships, small folio Dark Town Comics, a medium folio "Abraham Lincoln" and a small folio "Washington As A Mason"".

Links To Currier & Ives Sites:

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