Artist proof for A Monograph of the Odontophorinae, or Partridges of America.

John and Elizabeth Gould

Condition: Very Good No Binding
From Arader Galleries San Francisco (San Francisco, CA, U.S.A.)

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John and Elizabeth Gould Artist proof for A Monograph of the Odontophorinae, or Partridges of America. London, circa 1844-50. London, circa 1837-38. 25” x 28 3/4” framed Professionally framed with all archival materials, uv plexiglass John Gould was without question the most prolific ornithological publishers of the 19th century, and the only one to rival John James Audubon in ambition and quality. The 19th century was a time of intense fascination with discoveries in natural history, especially regarding knowledge of the wildlife of exotic lands. Gould shared the romantic enthusiasm of his time for such subjects, as well as the popular impulse to catalogue exotic wildlife. He combined his passion for natural history with outstanding scientific, artistic, and entrepreneurial talents. Drawing on these abilities, he embarked on a series of projects that would eventually make him the leading publisher of ornithological illustrations in Victorian Britain. Gould’s unparalleled career spanned five decades, and he produced a monumental series of books of birds throughout the world. From the time he took up taxidermy in his early teens, Gould was devoted to recording bird life, either as he observed it personally or as it was reported to him by other ornithologists. He procured the scientific information through extensive correspondence, travel, and field research. The preparatory drawings that he produced were passed on for completion to skilled illustrators, most notably his wife Elizabeth, who rarely took open credit for her stunning illustrations. The plates which resulted from their partnership were a splendid fusion of art and science, with a scope than remains unsurpassed. Stunning and at the same time highly accurate, these illustrations linked beauty to science, and science to beauty, in and an unprecedented manner. Nowhere is the artistic mastery of the Goulds more evident than in their original color proofs for the “Partridges of America,” in which the process of refinement and perfection is at its peak. These proofs, which bear not only the coloring and corrections, but many notations by the Goulds, were the final preparation stages for his fourth monograph, in which they considerably enlarged the recorded species of the American partridge family. As he noted in his preface to the book, Gould was inspired to undertake this study “by the sight of several living examples of the beautiful Callipepla Californica, brought home and presented to the Zoological Society of London by Captain Beechey in 1830.” In his colorful illustrations, the artist conveyed the beauty he perceived in birds that were often considered awkward, and he wrote that “the graceful actions and elegant deportment of these birds inspired me.” Gould’s research took him to collections in Paris, Brussels, Frankfurt, Nuremberg, Leipzig, Berlin, Hanover, Amsterdam and Leiden, and he was subsequently able to more than triple the number of recorded species of this genus. These are remarkable and unique works by these unparalleled ornithological artists. Bookseller Inventory # H00507c

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Title: Artist proof for A Monograph of the ...

Binding: No Binding

Book Condition:Very Good

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