Print Quarterly, September 2019

Posted in books, catalogues, exhibitions, journal articles, reviews by Editor on September 2, 2019

James Gillray, New Morality; – or – The Promis’d Installment of the High-Priest of the Theophilanthropes, with the Homage of Leviathan and his Suite, 1798, hand-colored etching, 8 × 24 inches (New Haven: Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection, B1981.25.1001). 

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The eighteenth century in the current issue of Print Quarterly:

Print Quarterly 36.3 (September 2019)


Allison M. Stagg, “William Cobbett, James Gillray and the Market for Caricatures in 1790s Philadelphia,” pp. 263–74.

In the decades immediate following the American Revolution (1775–83), caricature prints were imported from London to cities along the east coast of North America. Evidence of a transatlantic transfer of British satirical imagery can be found in the numerous advertisements published in American newspapers from this period. Despite the frequency with which caricatures are mentioned in newspapers, few details can readily be discerned from them. The advertisements primarily reference the general arrival of collections of British caricature prints, usually as an addendum to other imported items such as books, stationery and even clocks, and provide little to no mention as to what specific caricatures crossed the Atlantic (263) . . . Details found in documents dating from the last decade of the eighteenth century, however, allow for a more thorough examination of the availability of and interest in imported and American caricatures in Philadelphia in the late 1790s. The primary source is an account book in the collection of the American Antiquarian Society in Worcester, MA, of the famous British radical, polemicist and publisher William Cobbett (1763–1835), who took refuge in American in 1793 (264).

N O T E S  A N D  R E V I E W S

Truusje Goedings, Review of Wolf Eiermann, Claudia Steinhardt-Hirsch and Eckhard Leuschner, Prachtvoll illuminirt: Das Handkolorit in der Druckgrafik, 1493–1870 (Hirmer Verlag, 2018), pp. 304–06.

Neglected for a long time, the hand-colouring of prints, book illustrations and maps has been the subject of serious research during the last three decades, resulting in major exhibitions with comprehensive catalogues. . . [The present] catalogue, edited by Wolf Eiermann . . . is another effort to make the picture of 400 year of handcolouring more complete . . . The Sammlung Frank, a private collection in Stuttgart focused on German art and formed in the previous century, served as the main source, supplying about 110 of the 134 catalogued items (304) . . . The period from c. 1760 to 1880 is well represented with about one hundred items, mainly topographical, but also on costumes and natural history, including a rare example of Christian Gottlieb Ludwig’s Ectypa vegetabilium . . . / Nach der Nature verfertigte Abdrucke der Gewachse (nature-printed prints of plants; Halle and Leipzig, 1760–64) with 200 nature prints in contemporary colouring” (306).

Peter Fuhring, Review of Thomas Wilke, Innendekoration: Graphische Vorlagen und theoretische Vorgaben für die wandfeste Dekoration von Appartements im 17. und 18. Jahrhundert in Frankreich, 2 volumes (Scaneg Verlag, 2016), pp. 308–10.

The study of prints related to the decoration of secular interiors in France from the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, in association with theoretical guidelines, . . . reveals an ambition that is difficult to fulfill. . . So far not a single catalogue or study encompasses the entire French print production of wall decorations, mantelpieces and ceilings made during both centuries. . . Further research is necessary to complete the still lacunar state of our knowledge. This is what Wilkie strives to do. His study is composed of two parts: the first volume offers a presentation of the issues as set out in the title, while the second consists of a catalogue of prints that form the basis of the author’s demonstration (308).

Véronique Meyer, Review of Katie Scott, Becoming Property: Art, Theory, and Law in Early Modern France (Yale University Press, 2018), pp. 313–15.

[Scott’s] recent book . . . examines the relationship between intellectual property and the visual arts in France from the sixteenth century to the beginning of the nineteenth . . . It traces the history of this relationship, highlighting key moments with exemplary case studies as well as citing regulations and legal texts, (313) and examines the role of the parties involved, including booksellers, publishers, engravers, draughtsmen and authors. Although the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries occupy and important place in the book, which shows how the definition of privilege and copyright evolved over the years, it is above all France of the Enlightenment and Revolution that lies at the heart of this study (314). . . [It] is a must for all who are interested in the history of printmaking, the decorative arts and artistic theories and institutions such as the Académie Royale (315).

David Bindman, Review of Cynthia Roman, ed., Hogarth’s Legacy (Yale University Press, 2016), pp. 315–16.

Hogarth’s enormous and long-lasting influence on art and popular imagery is the subject of a series of essays, largely by scholars of eighteenth-century art, including . . . Douglas Fordham, Dominic Hardy, Brian Maidment, Patricia Mainardi, Ronald Paulson, Mark Salber Philips, and Michael Printy. . . Collections of essays inevitably fall somewhere on the spectrum between the tightly focused, based on a close conversation between the authors, and the loose and baggy, in which the connections between the essays are more informal. Although the quality of the essays is uniformly excellent, this volume tends more toward the baggy . . . The main and entirely commendable purpose of the volume seems to have been to make scholarly use and draw further attention to the relatively little-known and underused, and in some areas quite spectacular, collections of Hogarth engravings and late eighteenth-century caricature in the Walpole Library (315).

Roger Paas, Review of Josef Biller, Calendaria Bambergensia: Bamberger Einblattkalender des 15. bis 19. Jahrhunderts von der Inkunabelzeit bis zur Säkularisation, 2 volumes (Anton H. Konrad Verlag, 2018), pp. 317–19.

Biller has dedicated over four decades to the collecting and studying of broadside (316) calendars published for the bishopric of Bamberg, and the results of his in-depth research have now been published in a detailed and richly illustrated two-volume catalogue (318).

Daniel Godfrey, Review of Anke Fröhlich-Schauseil, Schenau (1737–1806): Monografie und Werkverzeichnis der Gemälde, Handzeichnungen und Druckgrafik von Johann Eleazar Zeißig, gen. Schenau (Michael Imhof Verlag, 2018), pp. 319–23.

The son of a damask weaver from Großschönau in Saxony, Schenau fled the outbreak of the Seven Years’ War in 1756 to Paris. There he Frenchified his name and established a reputation as an artist of ‘society paintings’ focused on liaisons between the sexes, coiffure and the texture of material. The mentorship of Johann Georg Wille (17151808), engraver, print publisher and art dealer, must have motivated Schenau to execute a set of twelve etchings in 1765, six of children acting as adults and six of heads . . . These were to remain Schenau’s only autograph prints (319) . . . Yet, Schenau’s career developed in symbiosis with the print.

Mark Bills, Review of John Ford, Rudolph Ackermann and the Regency World (Warnham Books, 2018), pp. 323–25.

Although Ackermann belongs to and epitomizes the Regency Period (17881830), one cannot help but think that he would be a very useful figure in the art and design world of today (323) . . . John Ford has absorbed an enormous body of material and given us a fascinating chronological account of Ackermann as well as adding important new research and insights (324).

P U B L I C A T I O N S  R E C E I V E D

• Joachim Jacoby, Guillaume Jean Constantin (1755–1816): A Drawings Dealer in Paris (Ad Ilissum for the Fondation Custodia, 2018), p. 339.

• Peter Stoll, Französische Buchillustration des 18. Jahrhunderts in der Oettingen-Wallersteinschen Bibliothek (Universität Augsburg Bibliothek, 2018), p. 339.

• Thora Brylowe, Romantic Art in Practice: Cultural Work and the Sister Arts, 1760–1820 (Cambridge University Press, 2019), p. 339.

• Helen Rosslyn, A Buyer’s Guide to Prints (The Royal Academy of Arts in association with the London Original Print Fair, 2018), p. 342.