November 21, 2015-February 28, 2016
Maxfield Parrish: Paintings and Prints
Works by the American imagist Maxfield Parrish (1870-1966), one of the greats of the Golden Age of Illustration, will be on view from November 21, 2015 to February 28, 2016. The works are drawn from the National Museum of American Illustration, Newport, Rhode Island, and curated by Judy and Laurence S. Cutler.
Maxfield Parrish: Paintings and Prints embodies the artist’s long career and extraordinary accomplishments, displaying Parrish’s lush coloristic effect with amazing detail. The exhibition includes original artworks as well as a large collection of vintage prints. Through this showing of artworks and vintage reproductions, today’s viewers will have the unique opportunity to see the way that viewers of an earlier age observed these images, comparing the mass-produced reproductions against the original luminous canvases.
Parrish described himself as “a businessman with a brush,” and was proud of his ability to market his artwork to the public. In 1904, a time that that the average annual income for an American worker was $500 or less, Parrish signed a six-year contract with Collier’s Magazine for $1,250 per month. His fee rose to $2,000 a painting, but each Parrish cover was a guaranteed sell out for that month’s edition of Collier’s.
Parrish’s universally popular and instantly recognizable images were produced between the late 1890s through the mid 1960s; they were seen on magazine covers, greeting cards, art prints, calendars, novels, advertisements and packaging. Clear and bold, with uncomplicated subject, Maxfield Parrish’s art prints papered the walls of American homes for decades.
Maxfield Parrish (1870-1966), A Grape Gatherer, 1904, oil on panel, 24” x 20”, initialed lower right, Scribner’s Magazine, October 1904 cover, © Copyright 2015 National Museum of American Illustration, Newport, RI, Photos courtesy Archives of American Illustrators Gallery, New York, NY