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Birket Foster's Pictures of English Landscape


(Engraved by the Brothers Dalziel, With Pictures in Words by Tom Taylor)


London, George Routledge and Sons, 1881

RARE INDIA PROOFS! LIMITED EDITION OF 1000.


Original 130+-year-old Wood Engravings on India paper, produced on a hand press and laid down on beautiful chain-lined paper with the crown Dickinson watermark.

Sheet size: approx. 10.75 x 15.25 inches

birket foster

Myles Birket Foster

Source: wikipedia

 

 

Myles Birket Foster
(4 February 1825 – 27 March 1899)

Birket Foster was the most celebrated Victorian watercolour painter of rustic scenes. He painted in a stippled technique with great technical skill. His work is not Pre-Raphaelite, but he was a friend of Burne-Jones and Morris, who decorated his new house in Witley, Surrey, in the mid 1860s.

Foster was born in North Shields, came to London as a child and at the age of sixteen was apprenticed to Ebenezar Landells, a leading wood engraver. He worked first as an engraver for Landells, which gave him a habit of precision and a sound understanding of the medium's potential. Then he worked as a draughtsman under Henry Vizetelly, where he began to illustrate books. In 1846 he set up as an independent illustrator, because he was already becoming famous as a draughtsman of rural scenes. His most celebrated illustrated book, Pictures of English Landscapes (1863, 1881), with verses by Tom Taylor, he conceived as a showcase. It contains thirty full page wood engravings (OFFERED BELOW), cut by the Dalziel Brothers. But Foster was already gaining a far higher reputation as a watercolourist. He began to exhibit in 1859 and was elected Associate of the Old Watercolour Society in 1860 and full Member in 1862. In the course of his exhibiting career, he showed some four hundred works at the Old Watercolour Society's galleries and his watercolours were also extensively exhibited by London dealers, particularly Agnew's and Dowdeswell's. In fact his work was so popular with the public that dealers virtually fought to purchase it and used to race each other from Witley Station to his home when he had work to sell.

 

 

First published in 1863, this edition was printed from the original blocks on a hand press in 1881.
The series of drawings was larger than his usual style and intended 'to be thoroughly representative of rustic English scenery.' After this he produced few drawings for wood blocks. 'Many other books were issued ... containing wood-engravings after drawings by Birket Foster, but in nearly every case they were old blocks which had been used in previous publications.' (H.M. Cundall. Birket Foster R.W.S. [1906])
PLEASE NOTE: THE ENTIRE SHEET IS TOO LARGE TO SCAN, THUS THE FULL MARGINS ARE NOT SHOWN BUT ARE PRESENT. THE BEAUTIFUL LETTERPRESS TEXT BY TOM TAYLOR ACCOMPANIES THE ENGRAVING.

Donkeys on the Heath
Donkeys on the Heath

PLATE II

$50

The Gleaners at the Stile
The Gleaners at the Stile

PLATE V

$50

The Old Chair-Mender at the Cottage Door
The Old Chair-Mender
at the Cottage Door


PLATE VI

$50

The Smithy
The Smithy

PLATE XII

$40
(fox mark)

The Watering-Place
The Watering-Place

PLATE XIII

$50

Cows in the Pool
Cows in the Pool

PLATE XIV

$50

The Market Cart
The Market Cart

PLATE XV

$60

A Winter Piece
A Winter Piece

PLATE XVII
(Light fox mark in left margin)

$40

The Lock
The Lock

PLATE XXIII

$50

The Ferry-Boat
The Ferry-Boat
(Night Thoughts in an Australian Stockman's Hut.)

PLATE XXVIII

$60

The Cottage on the Beach
The Cottage on the Beach

PLATE XXIX
(light marginal foxing)

$60

See other Birket Foster engravings here

Antique Landscape and Topography prints