Set of dandalions Royalty Free Set of dandalions stock vector art and more images of tree blossom
Kay Nielsen (1886-1957) is considered one of the leading European artists associated with what has become known as the golden age of illustration. His work extends to significant suites of monotone and color artwork for five major publications, in addition to design for the Danish Theater, work with Disney and major murals in California.
Having been privately supervised from the age of 12, Nielsen had shown an artistic interest from an early age, but while the stories read to him as a child gave plenty of subjects, he had no intention of becoming an illustrator - and instead thought he would train to be Doctor. At age 17, however, a radical change occurred in Nielsen's life when he quit his studies and traveled to Paris - as his mother had done in his own youth - and he completed formal education in the arts.
For the next seven years he attended a number of Parisian art schools, including "Academie Julien" - where he studied under Jean Paul Laurence; and "Collarossi" - where he studied under Kristian Krogg and Lucien Simon. As with his fellow students, his formal studies focused on working from nature, but his informal artistic pursuits followed a different path and included depictions of scenes described in works by Heine, Verlaine and Andersen, in addition to a suite dedicated to his own unpublished "Death Book" .
In 1910 he was offered an exhibition in London with Dowdeswel and Dowdeswel and his first exhibition was held in 1912. Nielsen took advantage of the success of his 1912 show and persuaded Hodder & Stoughton to produce a book with modern illustrated fairy tales. That publisher displayed the talents of Arthur Quiller-Couch for translating and compiling the text and in 1913 "In Powder and Crinoline" (Hodder & Stoughton: London; 1913) was published with 26 color images and more than 15 monotonous illustrations. For the first edition Nielsen's color illustrations were published with an expensive 4-color process to ensure accurate reproduction of his colorful and highly stylized designs.
In 1913, Nielsen also produced a series of illustrations showing scenes from the stories of Charles Perrault for publication in "The Illustrated London News," including: & # 39; Le Belle au Bois Dormant & # 39; (& # 39; The Sleeping Beauty & # 39;); & # 39; Le Chat Botte & # 39; (& # 39; Puss in Boots & # 39;); & # 39; Cinderella & # 39; (& # 39; Cinderella & # 39;); and & # 39; La Barbe Bleue & # 39; (& # 39; Blue Beard & # 39;).
The following year, his suite of illustrations was published which illustrated a translation of "Norwegian Folk Adventure" by Asbjornsen and Moe in "East of the Sun and West of the Moon" (Hodder & Stoughton: London; 1914). Once again, as with his illustrations for "In Powder and Crinoline", his color images used a 4-color process to produce the 25 tipped color plates for "East of the Sun and West of the Moon" - with these color images accompanied by illustrated final papers (applied with gold) and more than 22 monotone illustrations.
In 1914, Nielsen also produced a series of illustrations depicting scenes from Joan of Arc's life which were subsequently published in "The Illustrated London News" followed by extracts from "The Monk of Fife" (a romance set in St. Joan & # 39; s days)).
During the First World War, Nielsen returned to Denmark and produced designs for the theater, in addition to working on a phenomenal suite of color and monotone illustrations for a planned Danish translation of Scheherazade's classic Persian stories, "Thousand Nights and a Night". Considerations in the years after World War I Nielsen's suite for Scheherazade's stories was not published and his illustrations were discovered only after his death.
After returning to England in 1922, Nielsen received another commission from Hodder & Stoughton and the following year Leicester Galleries (London) held a Christmas season exhibition with his watercolors for that assignment, "Fairy Tales by Hans Andersen" (Hodder & Stoughton: London; 1923). . The published suite included 12 color images and more than 16 large monotone illustrations. His color design was prepared with integrated formal and informal borders - each of the borders was unique and the informal borders were created in a style similar to & # 39; mille fleur & # 39;).
Another significant illustrated book commission was received by Nielsen prior to his emigration to the United States - a project that resulted in a suite of 12 color images and more than ten monotonous designs published in "Hans and Gretel and Other Stories of the Grimm Brothers" (Hodder & Stoughton: London; 1925).
In 1925, Nielsen moved to the United States, but found difficulties in maintaining a profitable artistic career. By 1930, his fortune had forced him to carry out a further illustrated book commission for publication in England, and then his suite appeared with eight color images and more than 50 monotone designs in "Red Magic" (Jonathon Cape: London; 1930).
After that work, Nielsen returned to the United States and again found a varied success. He worked with Disney on a number of projects - most notably Bald Mountain / Ave Maria & # 39; sequences in "Fantasia", in addition to concept work on "The Ride of the Valkyries", "Sleeping Beauty", "Beauty and the Beast" and "The Little Mermaid". By the early 1940s, however, he had separated himself from Disney and from that time his work seems to have been largely limited to a number of assignments for large murals throughout California.
For more information on Kay Nielsen, the stories he portrayed and to see over 320 of his illustrations, visit the Kay Nielsen collection held by & # 39; Spirit of the Ages & # 39; Museum.