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W., Ellen

Album of cut-paper flowers.

Great Britain, circa 1835.
Physical Description:
1 volume (23 collages) : cut paper, collage ; 29 cm
Rare Books and Manuscripts
QK98.2.W3 A43 1835+ Oversize
Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Fund
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Copyright Status:
Public Domain
Visual Materials
The leaves of the album are watermarked 1835. The black sheets of paper on which some of the designs are executed may be watermarked 1827.
Bound in contemporary gilt-stamped green morocco, with dentelles, gilt edges, and marbled endpapers. There is also an original needlework botanical picture of a spray of roses mounted onto each inner board, executed in the style known as Berlin woolwork ("Type of embroidery beginning in the 19th century, usually worked in worsted yarns following a colored pattern drawn on a graphed chart; named as such because early major supplies of these patterns, yarns, and canvas came from Berlin. Primarily a Victorian phenomenon."--Getty Research, Art and Architecture Thesaurus.)
Of green leaf, bird, and flower: artists' books and the natural world, p. 49
The album contains 23 cut-paper flower collages, in the style of Mary Delany, created by an "Ellen W.", circa 1835. The compositions are all unsigned, but the first non-blank leaf bears a cut-paper wreath encircling the name "Ellen," and the front cover of the volume is gilt-stamped "E.W."
The flower compositions fill up a large portion of each 28 x 22 cm page; some are affixed to the album's matte white paper, others to glazed black paper. Ellen W. was clearly influenced by the work of Mary Delany (1700-1788) who, at the age of 72, began to create botanically accurate "paper mosaicks" in handcoloured tissue paper set against a black ground.
The album also includes one botanical watercolour painted onto an actual leaf.
Subject Terms:
Delany, Mrs. (Mary), 1700-1788.
Flowers -- Pictorial works.
Women in natural history.
Cut-paper works.
Collages (visual works)
Textile materials.
Berlin woolwork.
Botanical illustrations.
IIIF Manifest:

"Of Green Leaf, Bird, and Flower" : Artists' Books and the Natural World (Yale Center for British Art, May 15, 2014-August 10, 2014) [YCBA Objects in the Exhibition]

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