"The Itinerant Fiddler"   Lot no. 180

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By Arthur Burdett Frost (1851-1928)

1890 (Estimated)
18.00" x 26.75"
Watercolor en Grisaille
Signed Lower Left



Editorial illustration, image of a man playing a violin with other men looking on. The Itinerant Fiddler, probably Harper's Weekly magazine, 1890.

Explore related art collections: Magazine Stories / Black & White / Men / Liquor/Beer / Food / Musical/Band / 1800s / $20,000 - $50,000

See all original artwork by Arthur Burdett Frost



Arthur Burdett Frost was our best illustrator of rural America. He usually treated his characters with humor, and in his drawings there was a directness and honesty which showed his sympathetic understanding of his subjects. His sound draughtsmanship was combined with an intimate knowledge of nature. The details in his pictures are always very specific, as though drawn on the spot, and so artfully chosen and placed as to carry out the picture’s idea in a natural and entirely convincing manner.

    He may be best remembered now, however, for his charming illustrations for the Uncle Remus tales by Joel Chandler Harris. In the preface and dedication by Harris for the 1896 edition, he wrote of Frost “…you have conveyed into their quaint antics the illumination of your own inimitable humor, which as true to our sun and soil as it is to the spirit and essence of the matter… The book was mine, but now you have made it yours, both sap and pith…”

   Frost was appreciated as a wood engraver and gravitated to work as a lithographer. His first success came with his illustrations for Out of the Hurly-Burly by Max Adler. He became a member of the Harper’s Brothers art staff alongside Abbey and Pyle, studied with Thomas Eakins and William Merritt Chase. The Frost family also sojourned in France for a long period of study for Frost and his two sons.