Christie’s presents an online private selling exhibition of American Illustration Art

Art Daily
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Joseph Christian Leyendecker, Washington 2. © Christie's Images Ltd 2020.
Joseph Christian Leyendecker, Washington 2. © Christie’s Images Ltd 2020.

NEW YORK, NY.-Christie’s announces an online private selling exhibition The Art of the Cover, featuring America’s most-loved illustration artists, will take place 20 May through 19 June. Comprised of 23 lots, highlights include works by Norman Rockwell, N.C. Wyeth, J.C. Leyendecker, George Hughes and Joseph Kernan, among others. Prices range from below $100,000 to over $5 million, and a virtual gallery experience features audio from specialists on key paintings.

The Art of the Cover explores how illustration artists created a visual narrative of modern American life in the first decades of the 20th Century, reflecting the spirit of their times and establishing traditions and idioms that last to this day. Before television and the internet dominated news and entertainment, popular culture in the United States propagated largely through illustrated magazines. Through their craftsmanship and storytelling, illustrators depicted humorous and heart-warming scenarios of everyday life which resonated with the public, thus conveying a collective memory of culture.

Paige Kestenman, Specialist of American Art, comments, “They forged a sense of national identity, helping the American public to understand the worst of times – two world wars and a great depression – and also celebrating the best of times, from the holiday season to the everyday joys of life.”

• Norman Rockwell (1894-1978), Full Treatment, oil on canvas, 43.1/4 x 35 in. Painted in 1940.

• N.C. Wyeth (1882-1945), The Prospector, oil on canvas laid down on board, 39 x 27 1/4 in. Painted in 1912.

• Joseph Christian Leyendecker (1874-1951), Policeman and School Children, oil on canvas, 31 x 23 in. Painted in 1931.

• Stevan Dohanos (1907-1994), Ref Out Cold, gouache and watercolor on board, 25 x 19 1/2 in. Executed circa 1950.

• Garth Montgomery Williams (1912–1996), cover for ‘Charlotte’s Web’: A Pair of Works, Ink Drawing for the Cover, ink and pencil on paper, 12 x 10 in. Executed in 1952. Hand-Colored Blueline for the Cover, watercolor on blueline printed paper, 9 x 8 in. Executed in 1952.

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