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Bradley: His Book

Print
1896 (published)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

This magazine cover represents an important period of graphic and magazine design in America and the work of one of the premier American designers of the late nineteenth century. Having worked in the printing trade in Michigan since the age of 14, Will H. Bradley (1868-1962) became a freelance graphic designer in 1889 and produced work for the Inland printer, for whom he designed typefaces later bought by American Type Founders, and convincing them to commission a cover for every month for their?magazine the Chap-Book.Will Bradley’s cover designs for the Chap-Book are considered the earliest American art nouveau posters. Later Bradley moved to Springfield, Massachusetts and set up the Wayside Press which included among its publications Bradley His Book, an short-lived but influential magazine begun in from May 1896 taking inspiration from the Yellow Book. Alongside poems and short stories, were art reproductions and illustrations and adverts, woodcut initials and borders designed by Bradley. While his artistic style takes inspiration from French art nouveau some aspects of his work and his aims reflect William Morris and the British arts and crafts tradition, his goal was the make ‘Better and more refined that art which walks hand in hand with business. (Koch 125) In the magazine he promoted good art and design, while Bradley also designed books, interiors and architecture. The magazine used the Caslon typeface and woodcut illustrations. It folded in January 1897 due to Bradley’s ill-health.


object details
Category
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Colour lithograph
Brief Description
Cover to Bradley: His Book, June 1896, Colour Lithograph, Will Bradley.
Physical Description
Figure of a queen in a blue floral dress of thistle design, a tassled sash, a purple cape with geometric pattern with ermine collar and crown. The queen carries a sceptre and round her neck is a large chain with circular pendant. Text in red, grey and purple.
Dimensions
  • Sheet height: 51cm
  • Sheet width: 25cm
Styles
Marks and Inscriptions
  • BRADLEY / HIS BOOK (Top centre)
  • PRICE TEN CENTS / FOR SALE HERE / JUNE (Lower centre)
Subjects depicted
Summary
This magazine cover represents an important period of graphic and magazine design in America and the work of one of the premier American designers of the late nineteenth century. Having worked in the printing trade in Michigan since the age of 14, Will H. Bradley (1868-1962) became a freelance graphic designer in 1889 and produced work for the Inland printer, for whom he designed typefaces later bought by American Type Founders, and convincing them to commission a cover for every month for their?magazine the Chap-Book.Will Bradley’s cover designs for the Chap-Book are considered the earliest American art nouveau posters. Later Bradley moved to Springfield, Massachusetts and set up the Wayside Press which included among its publications Bradley His Book, an short-lived but influential magazine begun in from May 1896 taking inspiration from the Yellow Book. Alongside poems and short stories, were art reproductions and illustrations and adverts, woodcut initials and borders designed by Bradley. While his artistic style takes inspiration from French art nouveau some aspects of his work and his aims reflect William Morris and the British arts and crafts tradition, his goal was the make ‘Better and more refined that art which walks hand in hand with business. (Koch 125) In the magazine he promoted good art and design, while Bradley also designed books, interiors and architecture. The magazine used the Caslon typeface and woodcut illustrations. It folded in January 1897 due to Bradley’s ill-health.
Collection
Accession Number
E.204-2014

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record createdAugust 19, 2013
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