Four Etchings of Flowering Plants
Claude Saucy, 20th Century
Kalanchoe, full sheet Kalanchoe, image

Kalanchoe sheet (left), platemark (right)

Geranium, full sheet Geranium, image

Geranium sheet (left), platemark (right)

Constant Nymph, full sheet Constant Nymph, image

Constant Nymph sheet (left), platemark (right)

Cyclamen, full sheet Cyclamen, image

Cyclamen sheet (left), platemark (right)

Claude Gerald Saucy (1929-1999)
Kalanchoe
Geranium
Constant Nymph [Streptocarpus]
Cyclamen

Green and brown ink etchings with hand coloring
Each signed and titled below platemark, with A.P. notation
11.75 x 8.75 inches, platemark
20 x 15.25 inches, overall
$800, set of four

Set of four prints of flowering plants, two printed in green ink and two in sepia ink, with additional subtle hand coloring in watercolor.   Drawn in a graceful, linear style, each plant has its own character.  The subjects seem to have been chosen for the visual interest of their leaves, which have strikingly rich textures and curving planes that the artist plays off the vertical linear forms of the stems.  The prints demonstrate the attention to detail of traditional natural history illustrations, though with a modern artist's interest in the formal qualities of the plants, as opposed to an 18th- or 19th-century illustrator's interest in the classification of species. All of the prints are labeled “A.P.,” i.e. artist’s proofs, a designation meaning the print is not part of a numbered edition. Artist’s proofs generally are early strikes of the print or prints retained by the artist and not sold by the publisher.

Claude Gerald Saucy was a Swiss-born printmaker and educator whose primary media were wood engraving, copperplate engraving, and etching.  He studied art in Switzerland under Max Bill, a Swiss architect, artist, painter, typeface designer, industrial designer and graphic designer. Saucy spent his early career as an artist and teacher in Switzerland where he became known for his black and white surrealistic prints.  He moved with his family to Connecticut in 1966 to become Head of the Art Department at the Kent School, a private college preparatory school, a position he held until he retired in 1993. Although his later work included color monoprint woodblocks, the offered color-printed botanical prints are an unusual subject matter for him. Saucy is included in the Biografisches Lexikon der Schweizer Kunst [Biographical Dictionary of Swiss Artists] (1998).

Condition: Generally very good, rich impressions, with the usual overall light toning and wear.  Tape residue from former mounting in outer margins verso, is stable and does not affect front.

References:

“Saucy, Claude.”  Swiss Institute for Art Research. 2006.  http://www.sikart.ch/ (20 September 2007).

Note: Some of the biographical information was provided by the artist's son, Marcel C. Saucy.


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