SKU: A01585 Category:


Description: English artist and book illustrator Walter Crane (1845-1915) penned this two-page letter to a Mr. Rivington, discussing Rivington’s completion of a handbook on Keim’s process. Keim’s process, also known as mineral painting or stereochromy, is a method of painting murals or frescoes that uses a water glass (sodium silicate) based paint to maximize the longevity of the finished piece. Regarding Rivington’s handbook on this process, Crane writes: “I think the printing of testimonials from Prof. Roberts Austen, Mrs. Merritt, Mr. Shields & Mr. Holman Hunt ought be very valuable in calling attention to its merits.” Crane goes on to say that unfortunately he isn’t confident he can help Rivington himself “until [he has] actually tried a panel, & [he gets] so little time for experiments now.”

A record of a book published c. 1900 and titled¬†Mineral Painting: A Practical Handbook to the Process of Improved Stereochromy Invented by Adolf Wilhelm Keim written by Rev. J. A. Rivington is listed on WorldCat and can be presumed to be the handbook to which Crane refers. “Prof. Roberts Austen” is most likely Sir William Chandler Roberts-Austen (1843-1902) an English metallurgist noted for his research on the physical properties of metals and their alloys. “Mrs. Merritt” is Anna Lea Merritt (1844-1930), a painter and printmaker whose work is found in the British National Collection and who painted the walls of St. Martin’s Church in Blackheath Village using Keim’s process. “Mr. Shields” is British artist and illustrator Frederic Shields (1833-1911), and “Mr. Holman Hunt” can be none other than Pre-Raphaelite artist William Holman Hunt (1827-1910).

Walter Crane is considered to be the most influential, and among the most prolific, children’s book creators of his generation. Crane’s work featured some of the more colorful and detailed beginnings of the child-in-the-garden motifs that would characterize many nursery rhymes and children’s stories for decades to come. He was part of the Arts and Crafts movement¬†and produced an array of paintings, illustrations, children’s books, ceramic tiles, wallpapers and other decorative arts.

Written on a folded sheet of plain stationery that measures: 7 1/8″ x 4 3/8″. Item #A01585

Condition: A couple of spots of staining, mounting remnants on verso, several spots of ink bleeding. Generally very good condition.