Herald of Truth (Cincinnati)
Herald of Truth monthly, has Frances Gage, the Carey poet sisters, Gallagher etc, covers Swedenborg
1847 opposed to a military hero being president
July 1847 Arlington writes on Art and the Artists, Cinti noble effort to found permanent estab of Fine Arts, pleasure inJohn P Frankenstein’s latest works, superior plastic power has called forth more envy than just criticism, have seen more goodness and moral purity stamped upon the face of a deformed creature, than any embodiment of beauty. What moral truthdid they convey, or not works of Art. Christ design conveyed moral sublimity of Humility, ably depicted pure philanthropic soul suffering under scorn. Isaiah too. Praise as genius also Mrs Spencer, Sonntag and Jones, Spencer better than Frankenstein in embodiment of passion, but Frankenstein conceptions heir to Allston
Sept 1847 Letters from the Queen City by Maria Varney, very opposed to Mexican war. Visits Art Union, have seen notices of it in the Herald (ads?) 3 ptgs by Mrs Spencer, two year old boy with cocked hat, life like, glee. A still life of fruit and ice cream, excites palate.Sunny faced woman with infant on her knee, bunch of flowers, “one of life’s happy hours” both happy they inspire you, beaut life like, expressive characters. Has interesting pieces in her own rms on Walnut st too, no common order of talent. Sorry to not see Frankenstein, fine relief, sweet river scene on a foggy morning haunts me
Nov 1847 Letters Varney, Cole puts soul in his lscape, as Spencer does in her figures
Feb 1848 reviews Chas Lanman Summer in the Wilderness. most authors write to sell, not to elevate. This one was made to sell, pretends to describe the country, but searches for improbable fictions, forced effort to clothe them, neglects what is most valuable, are loggers robbing public domain of what gives land its value, fertility, etc; his facts are fictions, he’s a coward, didn’t go where he said he did, a literary imposition.
p134 Western Art Union: the necessity of associated effort for cultivating the public taste on this subj, indiv effort is nothing. It is an Institution for the Public Good, not to enrich artists, but give them a steady market and ptgs to the people
Lucius Hine the editor, no longer John White, in March Editor’s place says if you criticize slavery, should also criticize capitalism. Gives Miss Sarah Mallory’s tribute to justly celebrated artiste Mrs Lily Spencer, not based on her sex, visited her studio, evidence of genius, if wanting in execution in perfect finish. But multitude of beaut and various groupings, copy of a Sunny Hour of Life in which heart of woman and mother gleam thru, being crowned with flowers by two year old, face radiant with joy and hopes for the future; God Bless my father, in evening of life, old man sleeps at peace, daughter prays, holy and sacred rlns beaut expresssed. Psyche’s Cupid in many points fine, eye raying a great and noble soul, but proportion and drapery somewhat faulty. Sailor’s Wife looking for vessel, fearful anxiety. Prison scene, Street Singers, mom with sleeping child, great lessons, elevates mankind. Editor praises TD Jones the sculptor, we have been humbug servers too long, who like shams from East orItaly, need to judge true merit, don’t need to go to Italy, good thing exists in soul. Bust of Tom Corwin near perfect likeness, peculiar characteristics, mental activity mark his expression
April 1848 has Duganne’s Unsold Lands fr the Young America
May 1848 Maria Varney praises Art Union as perfect paradise, Powers Proserpine, Eaton fine portrait, Spencer as lifelike as ever, artist of no common stamp. Cole’s voyage of human life surpasses anything of the kind
editor seems to be at war with ED Mansfield, getting persecuted for being infidel, says its pages are open to any opinion
July 1848 is last issue, TW Whitley’s Western AU, says it is respectable pic gallery, dime admittance. Says participated in first movements which resulted in present v ineffeicently managed institution, call attn to plan submitted by one of first and far advanced minds among young men of city, known thru a journal which conducts with marked ability. At start danger of AU management falling into temptations of self love and patronage, effort made to give AU comprehensive character, Editor of Morning Signal, practical wisdom. Current officers exhib decided partiality, they opposed the plan suggested for a better and bigger art union that they would not be able to control. If music, poetry and oratory and the sciences had been included.
Managers bought imported pics fr East or Italy said to have been orig, artists at home were chosen fr pets, copies of prints exhibite, $100 pd for feeble imitations, and ten more pics from tyro purchased.
Gallery ostentatious, president worshipped. Cole’s gorgeous coloring will create aversion for youthful Artists style, or tempt unwary into imitative servility, and his pics plundered—directors only buy what has impress of Cole. Topographical ptgs of scenes ever changing and near home find no favor. Instead they want fantasies of rocky mtns, copies of Catskills done to death, ideal westward ho is all they want. Rhapsodies in paint that corrupt the eye and soul, mixed drinks rather than our own Catawba and sparkling Ohio wine. Like Charles Anderson on WAU board, urges local and national subjects; Whitley wants to drive the Louis Phillippe of estab fr throne.
Paintings at the Art Union by foreigners or aliens (old masters), the largest class, copy after Murillo charming, esp compared to the Cleopatra near the President, a loaner that no one can figure out the subj. Better to not put these old copies up, home masters instead.
Am artists: mania for ptg geology, flora, trees, doubt whether the young buckeye boy or little emigrant would have been purchased while other orig subjects fr home were passed by. too much Linnaeus and Swedenborg, young Phaeton petrifies green earth into quartz, fantastically angular and transparent, hostile to Wilson, but he’s promising and just needs to learn to draw the figure well, hope he will do a series based on Cooper.
Very hostile to The Poor Relations, WAU has literally gone to the dogs, very cleverly ‘made up’ pic is prize for the yr, but who are they> English dogs and their little bow wow wows, precious evidence of originality, taste and love of country, should have gone to London Art Union as satire. Beaut Setter apt for Queen of England, matronly solicitude for sufferings of poor Ireland touchingly embodied in poor slut and her rugged offspring advancing crouchingly to footstool of rich relatives. Bulldog in back embodies grin and bear it portion of English people too powerful for happiness of Ireland. Clever as work of art, but shouldn’t be first in West, need local subj, Powell should do a subj. Hope cardinal principle of Barnburners will spread over west. Need Frankenstein, Soule and Deas, poet or novelist, WD Gallagher or GW Cutter
advise those we criticize to reply with the brush,w on’t be silenced by common methods. Genius of artist in defects of his works, as 9/10ths of mod pics are copies fr prints or mere compositions, his beauties are borrowed and defects his own