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    Harry Clarke (Irish, 1889-1931)
    The Little Sea Maid, Fairy Tales by Hans Christian Andersen interior illustration, 1916
    Ink and pencil on artist's card
    11.5 x 8 in. (image)
    Initialed lower left

    Harry Clarke lived a tragically short, but highly successful life as an artist in Ireland. Despite his brief career, Clarke is widely considered one of the greatest European illustrators, alongside Arthur Rackham, Aubrey Beardsley, Kay Nielsen, and Edmund Dulac. Known for his work in both illustration and in stained glass, he was instrumental in cementing Ireland's place in the Art Nouveau and Art Deco movements.

    Clarke illustrated only ten books. His first two commissions -- included in this count -- were never completed due to the 1916 Easter Rising in Dublin. Fairy Tales by Hans Christian Andersen was Clarke's first published commission. The Little Sea Maid, executed in a decadent and luxurious fashion evocative of the Art Nouveau Movement, is a rare example of a master illustrator from the Golden Age of European illustration. The present work tells the tale of a young mermaid who fell in love with a human Prince on a passing ship. The mermaid then struck a deal with the sea witch - her tongue for legs - in order to marry the prince and therefore, gain an immortal soul. Disney has since made the tale famous as 'The Little Mermaid.'

    A reprint of the book including illustrations by Harry Clarke accompanies this lot.

    Condition Report*: Sheet measures 15.25 x 12.5 inches; there appears to be moderate acid staining and possible water damage to margins as well as vestiges of old adhesive and mat, not visible when matted; extremely minor matburn affecting extreme edges of image; slightly buckled (concave) in center, possibly due to humidity. Matted to 17 x 14 inches. Framed to 18.25 x 15.25 inches.  
    *Heritage Auctions strives to provide as much information as possible but encourages in-person inspection by bidders. Statements regarding the condition of objects are only for general guidance and should not be relied upon as complete statements of fact, and do not constitute a representation, warranty or assumption of liability by Heritage. Some condition issues may not be noted in the condition report but are apparent in the provided photos which are considered part of the condition report. Please note that we do not de-frame lots estimated at $1,000 or less and may not be able to provide additional details for lots valued under $500. Heritage does not guarantee the condition of frames and shall not be liable for any damage/scratches to frames, glass/acrylic coverings, original boxes, display accessories, or art that has slipped in frames. All lots are sold "AS IS" under the Terms & Conditions of Auction.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2018
    12th Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 18
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 6,608

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    25% on the first $250,000 (minimum $49), plus 20% of any amount between $250,000 and $2,500,000, plus 12% of any amount over $2,500,000 per lot.

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