Sunday, May 24, 2009
In Living Color
Charles William Bartlett was born in England in 1860. Trained initially as a metallurgist, he eventually studied art for three years in England and soon after in Paris, where he was introduced to Japanese printmaking. He had a successful career as a painter and was highly regarded by his peers. In 1913, his interest in Japanese woodblock printing and a sponsorship by his wealthy in-laws took him, accompanied by his wife, to Pakistan, India, Ceylon, China, Indonesia and finally Japan, where he worked with some of the most well respected artists of the day.
In 1917, after four years on the road, he & Mrs. Bartlett left Japan for England, but a brief stop in Hawaii was all it took for them to make it their permanent home, and he never returned to England.
These stunning woodblock prints were made by Charles Bartlett around 1920. Although he was a painter as well as print maker, his talent shines the brightest in his outstanding woodblock prints. The colors in these are so fresh it's hard to imagine they were created almost 90 years ago.