Saturday, July 6, 2019

The incredible lithographs of Mabel Wellington Jack

The following 5 lithographs were created by Mabel Wellington Jack, while she was in the WPA...

Above: "Speedboat," 1937. Image courtesy of Jon Bolton and the Racine Art Museum, used here for educational, non-commercial purposes.

Above: "Scoring," 1939. Image courtesy of the Newark Museum.

Above: "Swan Dive," ca. 1935. Image courtesy of the General Services Administration and the Baltimore Museum of Art.

Above: "The Tender," 1936. Image courtesy of the General Services Administration and the Baltimore Museum of Art.

Above: "Coal Hopper at 14th Street," 1938. Image courtesy of the Smithsonian American Art Museum.

Above: Mabel Wellington Jack's signature, from her "Swan Dive" lithograph (and which can be seen on her other artworks too). The life story of Mabel Wellington Jack seems to have been lost in history; there's doesn't appear to be much information about her on the Internet or in newspaper archives. She lived from about 1899 to 1970 or 1975. Her "Swan Dive" lithograph is mentioned in the book Women, Art and the New Deal (Katherine H. Adams and Michael L. Keene, 2015): "This symbolism of freedom through sports, representative of a new world into which women were propelling themselves also occurred in depictions of diving. In Swan Dive, Federal Art Project artist Mabel Wellington Jack used lithography to produce a stunning chiaroscuro image [an image with a strong contrast between light and dark] of a diver in mid-flight..." (p. 54).

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