He who knows how to appreciate colour relationships, the influence of one colour on another, their contrasts and dissonances, is promised an infinitely diverse imagery.
- Sonia Delaunay
Colour is my day-long obsession, joy and torment.
- Colour is my day-long obsession, joy and torment.


Tuesday, July 8, 2008

More Leyendecker and other great stuff

Posted by Charley Parker at 11:10 am

J.C. Leyendecker
OK, I realize I just posted about the amazing Golden Age illustrator J.C. Leyendecker a couple of weeks ago, and I’ve written about him half a dozen times in the past, but I have this general rule that says there’s no such thing as too much Leyendecker.

The first item I want to tell you about is a limited edition book that accompanies the exhibit I talked about in my last post, Americans Abroad: J.C. Leyendecker and the European Academic Influence on American Illustation.

Frustratingly, my schedule won’t allow me to get to New York before this exhibit closes on Saturday (July 12), but a friend was kind enough to pick up a copy of the exhibition catalog for me.

Aside from the fact that it makes me even more disappointed that I won’t see the show in person, it’s the next best thing, because the book is wonderful. It’s full of beautiful illustrations by J.C. Leyendecker, his brother Francis X Leyendecker (underrated in the shadow of his brother) and a number of other great Golden Age illustrators who were classically trained, including Edwin Austin Abbey, Edwin Howland Blashfield, Anton Otto Fischer, Norman Mills Price, Everett Shinn, William Thomas Smedley, Violet Oakley and others.

The book is a treat and, given the scarcity of Leyendecker material in print these days, a steal at $25 just for the beautiful reproductions of his work.

On that note, the second item is a new Leyendecker book on the horizon (finally!!). J.C. Leyendecker by Laurence S. Cutler, Judy Goffman Cutler is due in September of this year. The link I give here is to the Amazon pre-publication listing.

Lastly, for those who can’t get to the show or grab the book(s), I have a nice new Leyendecker web link as well. An anonymous benefactor who goes by the name of Mr. Door Tree has kindly posted some Leyendecker goodies to his Golden Age Comic Book Stories blog, including the image above, Cuchulain in Battle, from The Century Magazine, 1906, which is also in the Society of Illustrators show and catalog.

Addendum: Unfortunately, as of 8’28/08, the Leyendecker post on Golden Age Comic Book Stories has been taken down, and I don’t know another source for these images. I’ll leave the link in case they reappear.

Addendum II The new book J.C. Leyendecker by Laurence S. Cutler and Judy Goffman Cutler has been published. While I haven’t gotten my copy yet, reports are that they have done a terrific job, investing years of research and filling the book with hundreds of carefully prepared images.

Posted in: Illustration   |   15 Comments »

15 comments for More Leyendecker and other great stuff »

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  1. Comment by Paolo Rivera
    Tuesday, July 8, 2008 @ 1:04 pm

    I’m going to see the show today! Can’t wait.

    Thanks for the links too. A new Leyendecker book is long overdue, and that Golden Age blog is a wonderful resource (as is yours).

  2. Comment by Charley Parker
    Tuesday, July 8, 2008 @ 3:59 pm

    Thanks, Paolo!

    Other readers should check our Paolo Rivera’s dramatic comic book cover art and painted comics interiors, both on his blog and his portfolio site.

  3. Comment by Liz
    Wednesday, July 9, 2008 @ 2:24 am

    GORGEOUS! I love the amazing use of color in the example you posted. Wow – this blog has introduced me to so much great stuff. So very cool!

  4. Comment by Charley Parker
    Wednesday, July 9, 2008 @ 7:44 am

    Thanks for your comments, Liz. I’m glad to know you’re enjoying the posts.

  5. Comment by Li-An
    Wednesday, July 9, 2008 @ 1:17 pm

    Great news ! Thank you for sharing this, Charley !

  6. Comment by Li-An
    Wednesday, July 9, 2008 @ 1:19 pm

    And what about this one ???? http://www.amazon.com/Art-J-C-Leyendecker-Joseph-Christian/dp/1845769295/ref=pd_bxgy_b_text_b

  7. Comment by Charley Parker
    Wednesday, July 9, 2008 @ 1:27 pm

    Good to know, thanks, Li-An.

    Even less information available about this title. It says the publisher is Titan Books. They usually specialize in material related to film, comics and science fiction. I went to their site but couldn’t find any info about this title. I guess we’ll just have to wait until October.

  8. Comment by C. Gertz Bech
    Friday, July 11, 2008 @ 4:46 am

    I like that “general rule” of yours concerning Leyendecker …

    Thank you for a very informative blog. This is actually where I first read about Leyendecker. Sadly, I won’t be able to see the exhibit either, as there is a little something called the Atlantic Ocean between it and me.

  9. Comment by Charley Parker
    Saturday, July 12, 2008 @ 10:09 am

    Thanks. I feel the same about many terrific exhibitions I see listed at museums in the U.K. and Europe.

  10. Comment by Jason Waskey
    Saturday, July 12, 2008 @ 11:49 am


    I’m thinking of having that made into a tattoo…

    Have you ever thought about doing a piece on Frank…? Even as a compare/contrast? (I did a quick search on the blog but didn’t see one)

    Great job as always, Charley!

  11. Comment by Charley Parker
    Saturday, July 12, 2008 @ 1:07 pm

    Thanks, Jason.

    I have thought about doing a post on Frank, though there are fewer resources available. The best I’ve found so far is on the American Art Archives.

    Let me know if you get that tattoo… (grin).

    Other readers may want to check out my post on Jason Waskey.

  12. Comment by Catherine
    Friday, August 29, 2008 @ 6:39 am

    I just found this post in late August, but it seems as though Mr. Door Tree has removed the Leyendecker goodies, unfortunately… You wouldn’t have happened to have saved them?

  13. Comment by Charley Parker
    Friday, August 29, 2008 @ 11:53 am

    Unfortunately, I don’t know of another source for these.

  14. Comment by Laurence S. Cutler
    Sunday, October 5, 2008 @ 2:39 pm

    Mr Parker: Just a brief note to thank you for listing our new JC Leyendecker book published by Abrams on your blog-which by the way we enjoy very much. Of course, we especially enjoyed your recent work on the Soc of Illustrators exhibition to which we loaned a number of pieces. Their catalogue is well done.

    I think you will have a ball with our new book for after 12 years of research, we identified many unknowns about his life, including locating his grave, and the fact that he had another brother in addition to FX Leyendecker, also an artist by the name of Adolph. We also have included (thanks to Abrams publishing) 600 color illustrations including most of his mag cvrs and ALL 322 SEP covers, with most images in book scanned directly from the original art works themselves.
    Thanks again and if you are ever near Newport, pls do ring us and visit with us at the Natl Mus of Amer Illustration and see the largest collection of JCL originals.
    Sincerely, Laurence Cutler and Judy. too

  15. Comment by Charley Parker
    Monday, October 6, 2008 @ 8:54 am

    Thanks, Laurence!

    I’ve added an addendum to the post indicating that the book has been published.

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