Saturday, May 21, 2011

Three Antique Illustrations and the "Keats of Kentucky"

Aren't these breathtaking? I admire this artist's work tremendously.
More importantly, I think his work was inspired by the stunning poetic grace of a long neglected master of its style. For more on our poet, Madison Cawein, his work, life and times, you can click HERE. He earned his nickname, "the Keats of Kentucky" by virtue of both style and graceful wording. It is a shame we are no longer interested in the particular style that era produced prior to about 1900. The old fashioned habit of collecting poetry to be read aloud at public, even gala, events seems to be a relic for us to ponder. And, as we are more interested in our modern technological advances than in old fashioned art and books, the gifts of both these American treasures may become as forgotten as old dust on a shelf.
Nowadays, most people never come in contact with Cowain's poetry at all, for it is not the sort we recognize in our modern terms.
But I find it quite unusual in its beauty. 
John Conacher, the illustrator of this particular set of rhymes, was also well known in his day. However, I had been unable, as of this posting, to find any more information for you on him other than his birth and death years, or that his works can be sold at auction. Nobody seems to know anything about him, let alone to be sharing it with us online.
Meanwhile, you and I may enjoy the efforts of both these notable Americans, can't we?
I can think of at least a dozen various uses for these three pages, including altered book making, transferring to fabric, a decoupaged folding screen, and so on. Hope our offerings today may introduce you to the formal and lyrical style of poetry as it was in the late 19th and very early 20th centuries. But more than that, we hope you'll find plenty of ways to enjoy your art-making using these lovely works.
As usual, you get your choice with us, in that our offerings include both simply the artwork and artwork plus poem. (Personally, I enjoy both.)
And Happy Creativity from all of us here in our Studio!
Rose & Friends


Three Illustrations With (or without) Poetry
Page One
With Poem
Downloadable Version HERE




Page One
Wordless
Downloadable Version HERE




Page Two
Downloadable Version HERE




Page Two
Wordless 
Downloadable Version HERE







Page Three
Downloadable Version HERE




Page Three
Wordless
Downloadable Version HERE




Scanned Imagery courtesy PPS Archives
Free for Public Domain Use






6 comments:

artistamyjo said...

Love this one Rose, I'm a big fan of poetry as well.
Thank you for the lovely comment on our backyard. We do love it despite the long wait for time to spend in it. It's been such a slow spring !
Hugs, Amy

Plush Possum Studio said...

Hi Amy! Thanks for your positive response! Your place is so lovely I couldn't resist singing your praises a little.
Here in the west we had a curious winter, with too little of regular cold or snow, and now we're in a sort of spring rainfall which seems a bit odd under the circumstances. Our hills can use all the moisture they can get. However, the flower bed here can use a little boost from our weather.
**sigh** It has been a weirdly momentous year, hasn't it? from Japan's crisis to our own, it's been one wild rise so far.
Hope it's due for a real continual uplift!
Rose

Ann said...

oh,Rose..love these! This poem is so moving! thank you so much!!!!!!!!! xo

Plush Possum Studio said...

Ann: Glad you liked these. I'm thinking all kinds of possibilities creatively. So fun doing this for you guys online.
:)

pchickki said...

Very nice, Thanks so much. They are amazing.

Hugs to you

Plush Possum Studio said...

Pchickki: You are so welcome! I'm glad to see our little offering has been appreciated. If it were left to me, all our stock would be as richly rewarding to offer. Hopefully, that stock will increase over the coming months. We are overdue, I think, for an overhaul to the archives. Thanks for dropping by!
Rose

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