A PAIR OF THE EARLIEST OBTAINABLE VIEWS OF HARVARD
"South View of Harvard College & North East View of the Several Halls of Harvard College Taken from the Craigie Road"
Painted by Alvan Fisher (1792 - 1863)
South View engraved by William B. Annin (d. circa 1839) & George Girdler Smith (1795-1878)
North-East View engraved by Charles Cutler Torrey (1799 - 1827)
Published by Cummings, Hilliard & Co. Boston: May 1st 1823
Line engraving and etching on wove paper
Paper dimensions South View…: 12 ¼ x 16 ¾ inches, Paper dimensions North-East View…: 12 ¾ x 16 ¾ inches
Framed dimensions 20 ½ x 24 inches
References: H. V. Bail, Views of Harvard, a Pictorial Record to 1860, 36; Stokes, American Historical Prints, E-142, E-141.
Alvan Fisher (1792 - 1863) is frequently considered to be the first professional landscape artist working in Boston. Born in Needham, Massachusetts, he began training with John R. Penniman (circa 1782-1830) at the age of eighteen and was soon painting portraits. His choice of subject increasingly focused on views of the New England landscape based on direct observation. By 1821 he was commissioned by Boston and Cambridge booksellers Cummings & Hilliard to execute this pair of images specifically for the purpose of being published as engravings. Shown and identified in the lower margin of the South View… are Massachusetts Hall, Harvard Hall, Hollis Hall, Stoughton Hall, Holworthy Hall, and University Hall. The North East View…includes and identifies in the lower margin University Hall, Massachusetts Hall, Harvard Hall, Hollis Hall, Stoughton Hall and Holworthy Hall. These works assisted in the development Fisher's reputation on a national level and over the course of his career he enjoyed a success both as a portrait and landscape painter. Highly promoted by their publisher, the engraving were successful enough to be later reproduced on Stafforshire transfer-printed earthenware by several English companies for the American market.
$15,000 for the pair
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