Thursday, March 18, 2010

Birds of Prey

Mexican Self Portrait

To end this week's very feathery adventure on a strong note, I have chosen the powerful, sometimes ominous
 creatures of Leonard Baskin, an American artist who worked as a sculptor, painter, illustrator, wood-engraver,
 printmaker, graphic artist, writer and teacher. Born in 1922, Baskin grew up in New York and studied at 
a Jewish religious college before going to Yale University. While still a student he founded Gehenna
small private press that produced over 100 fine books before his death in 2000, becoming the longest running
 privately owned press in the US. From 1953 to 1974 Baskin taught printmaking and sculpture at Smith College 
in Northampton, Massachusetts, then moved for nine years with the family to Devon, close to his good friend 
the poet Ted Hughes. Leonard and Ted collaborated on various publications, including Crow and Cave Birds.
 Baskin won a Caldecott honor for his children's book Hosie's Alphabet in 1973.

The Raptor

The Black Raptor

Fanciful Bird

Cave Bird

The Day Owl

Crow Icon

Open Fantasy

Baskin created a great number of prints, using techniques ranging from woodcut to etching and lithography.

Eagles of Heaven

Rainbow Tailed Raptor

Burgeoning Phoenix

Celebration Bird

After spending the first half of his artistic career expressing himself exclusively in black and white, 
Baskin started his explorations of color as shown in the three watercolors above. His artworks are hosted 
in the collections of many major international museums, including the Metropolitan, The Museum of Modern Art, 
the Vatican, the British Museum, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Smithsonian and the Tate Gallery. 
The images in this post are thanks to R. Michelson Galleries beautiful website.


  1. Me parece muy interesante tu blog.

  2. I was fortunate enough to work at the gallery while Leonard was alive and learned intaglio printmaking by pulling proofs for one of his last Gehenna books.

    Also... I made some, let's say, uncredited contributions to his last two children's books.

  3. Wow I love the picture... so amazing :)

  4. Amazing blog post. I love the different style of the bird. The gallery offers variety of arts. I love the arts and I am excited for the next blog post. Thanks for sharing the article to your reader.



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