The Avenue of the Allies

Childe Hassam (1859-1935), The Avenue of the Allies, drypoint, 1918, signed with the initials cipher in pencil lower right and inscribed “imp” [also signed CH 1918 lower left corner in the plate]. Reference: Clayton/Cortissoz 147, only state.  Printed on a sheet of old laid paper the artist tore from a book; with rough margins and losses from tearing of the sheet from the book, some repaired tears, 14 3/4 c 9 5/8, the sheet approx. 17 x 11 inches.

A fine impression of this very rare large drypoint, with substantial drypoint burr especially on the women lower right, also on the flags.

We do not know of another impression of this print to come onto the print market in recent decades.

Hassam collected fine papers for his etchings, sometimes finding them in old books; in this case he tore the sheet from a book of old architectural/geometric engravings (the engravings can be seen verso).

This is a view of Fifth Avenue near 59th Street, New York City. Up the street in the far distance the trees of Central Park are visible.  After World War I Fifth Avenue was renamed The Avenue of the  Allies during the Liberty Loan drives of 1918.  Hassam made a number of famed paintings of this subject  (known as the Flag Series), but just a few etchings,  starting in 1916 motivated in large part by his patriotism as well as his nearly lifelong love of New York City and Fifth Avenue.

 

Detail