Jo Mora

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Yosemite detail: border detail: Winter Sports
detail: Washington Column
Jo Mora (1876-1947)
Jo Mora: 1931
Color photo process print
17.75 x 14 inches, image
19.5 x 15.25 inches, overall
Sold, please inquire as to the availability of similar items.

A brightly colored pictorial map of Yosemite featuring a decorative border incorporating native American motifs, and images of various leisure activities including riding, swimming, dancing. Numerous pictorial illustrations appear showing recreational activities, as well as various rock formations such as the Royal Arches, represented by a king, and Cathedral Spires, shown with a bishop. There are also many comical illustrations, such as a man photographing two bears as they pose for a portrait, and a family running from their picnic blanket as bears eat their food. The lower border includes images of winter sports, such as skiing, tobogganning, ice skating, snowball fighting and snow man building.

A caption under the title reads: "There is so much of Grandeur and reverential Solemnity to Yosemite that a bit of humor may help the better to happily reconcile ourselves to the triviality of Man. Give me the souls who smile at their devotions! Now, should this light effort-not altogether truthful, so not altogether dull-afford you a tithe of mirth, I shall feel I have added to your reverence for Yosemite."

Joseph "Jo" Mora is one of the foremost pictorial mapmakers of the 20th century. Born in Uruguay, he spent his career in the United States. Like many pictorial mapmakers, Mora had wide-ranging interests and talents -- as an artist who worked in many media, a historian and an author. In 1904, he lived with the Hopi and Navajo Indians in Kearns Canyon, Arizona. He learned their languages and documented the Kachina ceremony and other ethnological information in photographs and paintings. From 1900 to 1949, Mora illustrated several books for children as well as books on California history. His pictorial maps were mainly of California and include maps of the state, Los Angeles, Yosemite, the Grand Canyon, 17 Mile Drive (Pebble Beach), Monterey and Carmel by the Sea. They are very popular with collectors today.