Iris (Nude Seated) – First State


Arthur B. Davies (1862-1928), Iris (Nude Seated), drypoint on zinc, 1916, signed in pencil lower left.  Reference: Czestochowski 33, first state (of 2).  In excellent condition, on a very light laid paper. With margins, 8 7/8 x 6 15/16, the sheet 11 1/4 x 8 3/4  inches, archival matting.

Provenance: ex Collection Lansing C. Baldwin

A fine impression of this rare proof, with a substantial layer of plate tone, and burr from the drypoint work. This print was not editioned in any state.

This first state impression shows the design drawn in drypoint; in the second state aquatint was added as well as some roulette work.

At this stage of his printmaking career Davies was immersed in experimentation with cubism, surely as influenced by his involvement in the Armory Show of 1913 – but Davies had always been one of the few American artists conversant with the work of the European modernists. In Iris he explores a number of cubist elements such as the intersection of flat planes, while adhering to a realistic rendering of the central figure.