Fancily Framed Antique Prints of Bouquets!
Published for the Fairy Bower in 1846, this exquisite set of six hand colored lithographs are great early American prints. Early for the high quality hand colored lithography during the mid 19th Century, these are exemplary of the best produced at the time. Published by Nafis & Cornish, New York and St. Louis. A perfect combination of lithography and intense water colors! Archival framing. Set of six $1800.
The Art of Lithography:
The art of lithography was a very laborious process. It took tremendous skill. It was a life long craft, once a lithographer, always a lithographer! No switching back and forth in careers in the OLD days. One would serve a long apprenticeship, sometimes years on end, with little to no pay, in order to become a craftsman like the one skilled to work on these rare hand colorerd lithographs of bouquets produced. The desired, original illustration was transferred onto a special kind of limestone. The limestone came out of a certain area of Germany. The limestone was cut into large slabs, about 1″ thick. The illustration was meticulously drawn onto the limestone slab with a type of a greasy crayon. What was under the greasy crayon essentially was what was printed in relief. The finished desired slab was then emerged into nitric acid. The nitric acid burned away what was not covered by the greasy crayon. That area was then in relief. The greasy crayon was wiped off, inked up, and printed onto a piece of heavy wove rag paper. (The making of the paper is another story).
The water coloring was meticulously added by a very experienced water colorist. Water coloring was also a life long career or craft. Intense ink from minerals and vegetables and insects made up water colors in the early days. These water colored lithographs are vibrant and beautiful. The prints themselves are in near perfect condition. The bouquets are stunning to look at in person