Saturday 21 May 2016
Alexandre Calame (1810–64) “Deer by a Stream”, c 1838, from the series “Essais de gravure à l'eau forte par Alexandre Calame, I-IV’, 1838/1850, four sets of landscape etchings (45 in all)
Etching on thick wove paper
Size: (sheet) 25.6 x 19.3; (plate) 21.9 x 16.5 cm; (image) 20.3 x 15.5 cm
Inscribed with Calame’s monogram within the image (lower-left corner) and lettered indistinctly below the image with the original painting’s measurements (lower left) and “A Calame W” (lower right). Calabi & Schreiber-Favre 1937, no.1, 12.
The British Museum offers the following description of this print: “Three hunters armed with rifles in a landscape; deer running among trees to left; after a painting.” (http://www.britishmuseum.org/research/collection_online/collection_object_details.aspx?objectId=1635395&partId=1&searchText=Calame+&page=1) Note: The two figures in the immediate foreground are more likely farmers harvesting reeds than hunters (see http://www.nga.gov/content/ngaweb/Collection/art-object-page.152387.html).
Condition: well inked impression but the plate shows wear, small margins (approx. 1.5 cm), in good condition for its age (i.e. there are no tears, stains or foxing but the sheet has light dustiness).
I am selling this original etching by Calame for $102 AUD (currently US$73.62/EUR65.60/GBP50.74 at the time of posting this print) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world.
If you are interested in purchasing this print that is rich in romanticism of a bygone age, please contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.
Calame’s fame rests with his views of the Swiss landscape and this print captures many of the key attributes of his work. Note for example his treatment of the towering trees, especially the comparison of their size and the diminutive size of the figures in the foreground: a weed harvester working in a stream accompanied by what I assume to be his cook who sits and no doubt offers advice on his labour and a hunter shown further back. Although I am repulsed by images of animals being hunted and killed, I need to draw attention to the “frozen moment” in time that Calame represents in this image through the plume of smoke rising from the hunter’s gun. Fortunately, I can report that the hunter is a rotten shot and he misses allowing the deer to romp its way back into the forest. I love happy endings …