Sunday, December 28, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Pence Gallery: Exhibit showcases Art Nouveau postcards

By
From page A3 | January 02, 2013 |

"Woman in Egyptian Costume," by an unknown artist, dates back to about 1900. It is from the collection of Robert Nevramont. Courtesy photo

The Pence Gallery’s current exhibit, “Art Nouveau Postcards,” resulted from a chance encounter with one of our Pence members. Davis resident Robert Nevramont dropped by one day, and as we chatted, he mentioned his interest in collecting old postcards. My ears perked up.

“Just how many do you have?” I asked. When he responded, “About 1,200, give or take,” I knew I had to know more about this collection, centering largely on Art Nouveau postcards from the late 19th to the early 20th century. His exquisite collection is a treasure, and he’s graciously sharing a selection of it with the public through Feb. 1.

This era in Europe and America was marked by a style, popularly called Art Nouveau, that touched every corner of design — from public buildings and metro signs to clothing and jewelry. Sinuous lines, floral motifs and an interest in handcrafted materials were hallmarks of this style.

Nevramont’s postcards include some of the best-known artists working in Europe, such as Alphonse Mucha, Raphael Kirchner and photographer Henry Ryland. Some of these artists used the postcard format as an inexpensive means of distributing their graphic art to the public, some only created designs exclusively for postcards. The collection also includes some great artistic advertisements for products such as special tonics and pipes, that would be frowned upon today, but are such great records of social trends of that era.

So often women figure prominently as subjects of the postcards, especially attired in costumes from a different culture. My favorite, “Woman in Egyptian Costume,” captures the strong profile of a graceful lady — reminding me that Egyptomania took over Europe during the 19th century, following Napolean’s Egyptian campaign. In fact, the connection to history is part of Nevramont’s rationale for collecting these tiny cards.

“Postcards provide are great sources of historical documentation, with cards produced from all over the world,” he says. “They are an important historical document and family keepsakes.”

Nevramont comes from a family of collectors, with his grandmother’s collection of stamps and postcards forming the beginning of his own. He is a wealth of information about the printing and social use of postcards as well, and has agreed to share special cards with the public during a talk on Friday, Jan. 18, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at the Pence Gallery, 212 D St. in downtown Davis.

This is a free talk and no RSVP is necessary.

One interesting part of postcards are the messages handwritten on the back, and Nevramont will share some of these with us and other favorite cards.

————

In the main gallery, “Our Stories: Judith Lowry’s Artistic Reflections on Native California” continues through Jan. 27. Lowry’s large narrative paintings are rooted in her heritage as a member of the Maidu, Hamawi Pit River and Washoe tribes, and are connected to engaging oral histories.

One of the most dramatic paintings, “Obedient Wives,” explains a cautionary tale of how unquestioning obedience by three blind owl wives toward their husband (a cunning rat with a habit for tricking his dinner into the fire), will not end well. To find out the ending to this legend, come into the gallery to figure out this rat’s fate.

Lowry will return to read her children’s book, “Home to Medicine Mountain,” on Saturday, Jan. 19, from 2 to 4 p.m. Three of the moving illustrations from this story are included in our exhibit. The book, written by Chiori Santiago and illustrated by Lowry, retells the experience that Lowry’s father and uncle had as young boys, when they ran away from Indian board school and returned home to attend the Bear Dance.

Children will create their own drawing in a book format, about an important family event that they want to remember following the reading, with artist Juli Ann Blanco.

To attend, RSVP to 530-758-3370 by Jan. 18. The cost is $6 each, or $4 for members. Parents are free if they are not participating.

— Natalie Nelson is executive director and curator of the Pence Gallery. Her column is published monthly.

Comments

comments

Natalie Nelson

.

News

Exchange students bring the world to Davis

By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Pastor has many plans for CA House

By Jeff Hudson | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Transit survey: 47 percent ride bikes to UCD campus

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A1 | Gallery

Playing Santa

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A2 | Gallery

 
Goats help recycle Christmas trees

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2 | Gallery

 
Pick up a Davis map at Chamber office

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

Sierra Club calendars on sale Saturday

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

 
Special holiday gifts

By Sue Cockrell | From Page: A3

Woodland-Davis commute bus service expands

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

 
Learn fruit tree tips at free class

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

Davis Bike Club hears about British cycling tour

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

 
Explorit: Get a rise out of science

By Lisa Justice | From Page: A4

NAMI meeting offers family support

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A6

 
Yoga, chanting intro offered

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A8

.

Forum

Blamed for her sister’s rage

By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

 
How much for the calling birds?

By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

 
Steve Sack cartoon

By Debbie Davis | From Page: A10

 
Many ensured a successful parade

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

Thanks for putting food on the table

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

 
.

Sports

Clippers get a win over Golden State

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Two more for the road for 9-1 Aggie men

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Patterson is college football’s top coach

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

NBA roundup: Heat beat Cavs in LeBron’s return to Miami

By The Associated Press | From Page: B10 | Gallery

 
.

Features

.

Arts

‘Unbroken': A bit underwhelming

By Derrick Bang | From Page: A11 | Gallery

 
Folk musicians will jam on Jan. 2

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11

.

Business

Passat: Roomy, affordable sedan with German engineering

By Ann M. Job | From Page: B3 | Gallery

 
.

Obituaries

James J. Dunning Jr.

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

 
Floyd W. Fenocchio

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

.

Comics

Comics: Friday, December 26, 2014 (set 2)

By Creator | From Page: B7

 
Comics: Thursday, December 26, 2014 (set 1)

By Creator | From Page: A9