La Ciudad Infinita

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La Ciudad infinita: versiones de San Juan ([San Juan]: Comisión Puertorriqueña para la Celebración del Año 2000 en la Ciudad de San Juan, [2000]). Copy 235 of 300;
15 lithographs and poems are numbered and signed. Graphic Arts Collection (GAX) Oversize Z232.A85 C58 2000e

The Puerto Rican Commission for the celebration of the year 2000 brought together 30 local artists and writers to represent San Juan in a deluxe portfolio of image and text. 300 copies were produced and donated to museums and libraries throughout the world.

la ciudad infinita4The authors include Magali García Ramis; Emanuel Bravo; Fernando Cros; José Miguel Curet; Angelamaría Dávila; Vanessa Droz; José María Lima; Dorian Lugo; Noel Luna; Joserramón “Che” Meléndez; Urayoán Noel; Olga Nolla; Lilliana Ramos Collado; Edwin Reyes; Aurea María Sotomayor; and José Luis Vega.

Artists include Luis Alonso; Carlos Dávila Rinaldi; Antonion Maldonado; Roberto Moya; Mari Mater O’Neill; María Antonia Ordóñez; Marta Pérez; Nick Quijano; Arnaldo Roche Rabell; Nora Rodríguez Vallés; José Rosa; Carmelo Sobrino; Rafael Trelles; Rafael Tufiño; and Jorge Zeno.

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Cleaning the Botanicals


Before cleaning

Our paper conservator, Ted Stanley is in the process of cleaning several hundred French botanical prints from Estampes pour servir à l’histoire des plantes, Paris: Imprimerie royale, [1700s]. The engravings by Abraham Bosse (1602–1676), Nicolas Robert (1614–1685), and Louis de Châtillon (1639–1734) were discovered by Prof. Volker Schröder in great need of attention. With only washing, no bleaching, the plates have been beautifully restored to their original condition.

Several plates from this collection will be on view during the Versailles on Paper exhibition opening next February 2015 in Firestone’s main gallery. Sincere thanks to Ted Stanley and to Volker Schröder for their assistance in this project.

botanicals7After cleaning





Art added to Firestone walls

third floor4Following the art program designed by architect Frederick Fisher, 2013 Gold Medal recipient by the Los Angeles Chapter of the American Institute of Architects, several new paintings have been added to the walls of Firestone Library. Painting and sculpture is now on view from the Princeton University Art Museum, Princeton Campus Collections, and Firestone’s Rare Books and Special Collections.
third floor3Sidney Goodman (American, born 1936), Lawn Practice, 1971. Oil on canvas. Princeton University Art Museum. Gift of Liza and Michael Moses 2007-151

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William Kienbusch (American 1914-1980), To the Ocean, Outer Sand Island, 1957. Oil on canvas. Princeton University Art Museum. Gift of James H. Beal, Class of 1920 and Mrs. Beal; y1962-5

third floor2Welcome back to portraits of James McCosh, Samuel Cox, and James Madison, freshly glazed.
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Tawny Lemming

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John Woodhouse Audubon (1812–1862), Tawny Lemming and Back’s Lemming, ca. 1847. Oil on canvas. GC 154 Audubon Collection, Rare Books and Special Collections

As Birds of America was wrapping up, John James Audubon (1785–1851) began collaborating with Reverend Dr. John Backman of Charleston on a work dealing with the animals of North America. The Viviparous Quadrupeds of North America occupied the final decade of Audubon’s life although he did not live to see the completion of the publication in 1854. His son, John Woodhouse Audubon (1812-1862) completed approximately half of the drawings, watercolors, and oil paintings for the project, which were lithographed, printed and colored by J.T. Bowen.
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According to Howard Rice’s exhibition catalogue, the text for plate 120 of The Quadrupeds states; “this [Tawny] Lemming is one of those animals we have never seen except the stuffed specimens. Our figure was drawn in London by J.W[oodhouse] Audubon from the original skin procured by Mr. Drummond.” Attribution of the drawing to John Woodhouse Audubon is further confirmed by the fact that in the small octavo edition of the same plate the legend has been changed (presumably corrected) to read: “Drawn from Nature by J.W. Audubon.”

Rice could not confirm whether or not there once existed drawings, as distinguished from oil paintings, for all the plates of the quadrupeds. If such drawings did once exist, then Princeton’s painting should probably be considered a variant version in oils rather than the prototype from which the lithograph was made.

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ex4898John James Audubon life mask, from the original by Robert Havell,
molded and cast by Robert Baird.

Elliott and His Friends

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Junius Brutus Stearns (1810–1885) painted over a dozen fishing scenes, including Elliott and his Friends (1857). The nearly life size canvas depicts his colleague, portrait painter Charles Loring Elliott (1812-1868) at the left; the humorist Frederic S. Cozzens (1818-1869) on the right; and Lewis Gaylord Clark (1808-1873), editor and publisher of The Knickerbocker, standing in the center.

Whether or not the three men actually spent time together fishing is unknown but they were certainly all friends. Elliott made at least 11 portraits of Clark and of his wife before being celebrated with an extended biography in Clark’s magazine.

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stearns Elliott4In the year before he posed for Elliott and his Friends, Cozzens published “The Sparrowgrass Papers, or Living in the Country” in The Knickerbocker. The story tells the humorous adventures of Mr. Sparrowgrass when he moves his family out of the city and experiences the joys of fishing (among other activities).

“…the slow and sleepy village presents a contrast, which, upon the whole, can scarcely be considered as favorable to the latter. Plumbers are very slow in the country; carpenters are not swift; locksmiths seldom take time by the forelock; the painter will go off fishing; the grocer on a pic-nic; the shoemaker to the menagerie.”– The Sparrowgrass Papers, 1856.

Our donor, Carl Otto Kretzschmar von Kienbusch, Class of 1906 (1884-1976) was an avid fisherman who gave the library Cozzens’ book at the same time he donated Stearns’ painting. Each June, he spent a month fishing for salmon on the rivers of eastern Canada. Even after he went blind in 1966, Kienbusch continued to fish with the help of a guide.


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Junius Brutus Stearns (1810-1885), Elliott and his Friends, 1857. Oil on canvas. Gift of Otto von Kienbusch, Class of 1906.

Frederic S. Cozzens (1818-1869), The Sparrowgrass Papers, or, Living in the Country (New York: Derby & Jackson; Cincinnati : H.W. Derby, 1856). Graphic Arts Collection (GAX) Hamilton 644 and Rare Books: Otto von Kienbusch Angling Collection (ExKi) PS1449.C64 xS6


Angelica’s Ladies Library

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The neo-classical painter Angelica Kauffmann (born Switzerland, 1741-1807), was admired in her day, as much for her beauty as her painting. Her status as an artist was so great that she was included in 1768 as a founding member of the Royal Academy alongside Benjamin West and Paul Sandby. She was, however, not allowed in their life class because of the nude model.

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Many of Kauffmann’s designs were engraved and published with various books of poetry or prose, such as this group of stories which includes John Dryden’s Love and Jealousy [Love Triumphant]; and Edward Moore’s Fables of the Female Self. In the present volume, Kauffmann was responsible for two of the designs and Henry William Bunbury (1750-1811) the others.

Angelica’s Ladies Library; or, Parents and Guardians Present (London: printed for J. Hamilton and Co. at the Shakspeare Library, Beech-Street, near Finsbury-Square; and Mrs. Harlow, Bookseller to Her Majesty, Pall-Mall, M.DCC.XCIV. [1794]). Gift of Dixon Q. Brown. Graphic Arts Collection Rowlandson 1794.2

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In 1781, George Keate (1729-1797) wrote An Epistle to Angelica Kauffman. In a foreword, he notes (and I believe this is correctly transcribed) “Accidentally discoursing with Angelica, on the Subject of Colours, and making some Inquiry concerning one of them then on her Palette, she informed me that it was prepared from the Gums which envellop the Mummies brought from Egypt; and had, if skilfully used, a very happy Effect in some Parts of Painting.”

“This Circumstance suggested to me the Idea of the following Epistle; which presenting itself with some Air of Novelty, I pursued it with the greater Warmth, from the pleasurable Opportunity it afforded me of doing Justice to so distinguished an Artist, and celebrating the very uncommon Talents, the unaffected Diffidence, and amiable Disposition, which are so happily united in the Character of that Lady to whom this Poem is addressed.”

George Keate (1729-1797), An Epistle to Angelica Kauffman (London: Printed for J. Dodsley, 1781) Rare Books (Ex) 3808.85.332

IFLA pre-conference

imagesXZZRHZ1ZCongratulations to our colleague Sandra Brooke, Marquand Librarian, who this morning opened the IFLA pre-conference in Paris together with Véronique Thomé of the Bibliothèque centrale des musées nationaux. Their website not only offers the complete program but also abstracts of each presentation in French and English.

“Tuesday welcome: Conference theme overview (Auditorium Colbert) – Véronique Thomé (conservateur/Curator at the Bibliothèque centrale des musées nationaux , coordinatrice de la pré-conférence / Satellite Meeting coordinator) & Sandra Brooke (Marquand Library, Princeton University, Présidente de la section des bibliothèques d’art /Chair of the IFLA Art Libraries section)”

The conference theme is: Art Libraries Meet the Challenges of E-Publishing: New Formats, New Players, New Solutions. Meetings will be held from August 12 to 14, 2014. For more information:


(c) Tony Bates Associates Ltd

“Recent years have seen an increase in experimental electronic publishing concerning the visual arts. Art publishers are not simply reproducing traditional print publications electronically; they are also creating remarkable works with unique digital functionalities. Artists, arts organizations, and publishers worldwide use applications, e-book readers, and Web resources in order to produce original artworks and new art resources. These new publications—media-rich, collaborative, open-ended, or immersive—are extending the scope of art publishing.”

Best of luck to all those involved!


Save the date: February 14, 2015

canvasMark your calendar for the upcoming exhibition Versailles on Paper: A Graphic Panorama of the Palace and Gardens of Louis XIV, on view February 13 to July 19, 2015 in the main gallery of Firestone Library, Princeton University.
Plan_général_de_Versailles,_son_parc,_son_Louvre,_ses_jardins,_ses_fontaines,_ses_bosquets_et_sa_ville_par_N_de_Fer_1700_-_Gallica_2012_(adjusted)This exhibition, which coincides with the tercentenary of the death of Louis XIV (1638-1715), brings together the finest holdings of Firestone and Marquand Libraries documenting the development of Versailles during the reign of the “Sun King.”

Through the display of a multifaceted array of engravings, rare books, historic maps, medals and manuscripts, Versailles on Paper pursues a twofold goal: to resurrect the many vanished components of this quintessential site of French monarchy, and to highlight the role of print in the international diffusion of the image of Versailles and Louis XIV in the 17th and 18th centuries.

Curated by Volker Schröder, Associate Professor of French and Italian, the exhibition will be accompanied by a special edition of the Princeton University Library Chronicle, with scholarly essays by Prof. Schröder and seven other experts in 17th century French art, architecture, history, and publishing.

The exhibition opening will be celebrated on Saturday, February 14, 2015, with a lecture by Dr. Ian Thompson, Reader in Landscape Architecture in the School of Architecture, Planning and Landscape at Newcastle University, and the author of The Sun King’s Garden. A reception will follow in the gallery.
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All materials are from Princeton University collections and a complete checklist will be posted on the show’s website, coming soon.

Utah Pioneers of 1847

utah 2Each year on July 24, Utah residents celebrate Pioneer Day, the anniversary of the day that Brigham Young and the first group of Mormon pioneers came into the Salt Lake Valley. Today, as in 1905 when this photograph was taken, members of the Latter-Day Saints walk portions of the Mormon Trail to reenact entering the Salt Lake Valley by handcart.

Last month, the popular events organized by the official “The Days of ‘47” required “standby seating may be available on a first-come, first-served basis” and speeches were streamed live online

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Photographer Charles Savage (1832–1909) was 73 years old when this photograph was taken and so, it is likely that it was someone from his studio who actually posed and took the photo. While his studio and most of his archive of important documentary photographs were lost in 1883 when a fire destroyed the building, Savage rebuilt and continued to work until the end of his life.
utah 1The Graphic Arts Collection hold 16 photographs made by or from the Savage studio, all of them albumen silver prints. Presumably Savage never made the transition to gelatin silver printing.

Charles Roscoe Savage (1832-1909), Utah Pioneers of 1947, 1905. Albumen silver print. Graphic Arts Collection GA 2012.02345.

Droll mezzotints of odd sizes

at a tragedyThe English droll mezzotint (also pictured was typically 14 x 10 inches (35.56 x 25.4 cm.). However, the popularity of the satirical images was so great, that variations were produced both with and without the artists’ knowledge.

The Graphic Arts Collection recently acquired a group of drolls in odd sizes, some with rather garish hand coloring. Two are published by the artist John Fairburn (active 1793-1843). The rest are printed anonymously for Bowles & Carver, Laurie & Whittle, and a few of the earliest for Carington Bowles (1724-1793). The Catalogue of 18th-Century British Mezzotint Satires in North American Collections describes the various shops as follows: “Robert Sayer became active as a printseller in his twenties as early as the late 1740s. Over the decades he built up his stock of copper plates by taking over others’ inventories, first Philip Overton, then James McArdell when he died in 1765. He formed a brief partnership with John Bennett from around 1774 to 1785, then operated alone again through 1793. At his death in February 1794 the firm and Sayer’s stock of plates were taken over by Laurie & Whittle. The Bowles family had been printsellers since the late 1600s with Carington Bowles representing the third generation. He worked with his father John Bowles (1701-1779) until 1763 when he took over the firm vacated by his aging uncle, Thomas Bowles (1695-1767), which he lead for thirty years. At his death in 1793, Carington Bowles’ business passed to his son under a partnership, Bowles & Carver.”

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For more about the print and book sellers, see,