Mariposa Lily

Date 1981
Technique Linocut
Price Sold
Exhibitor The Annex Galleries
Contact the Exhibitor 707.546.7352
Buy From / See At This Exhibitor's Site

Mariposa Lily is a color linoleum cut created in 1981 by American printmaker Henry Herman Evans. It is pencil signed, titled, dated, and editioned 157/200. Mariposa Lily was printed by Onomiva Evans with the assistance of the artist on ivory Basingwerk wove paper. The image measures 15 x 6-5/8 inches.

Calochortus splendens is a north American species of mariposa lily known by the common name splendid mariposa lily. According to the Califlora website, this perennial is native to coastal mountains and valleys of California and Baja California, as far north as Lake County. It is found in various habitats, including chaparral and woodland. Calochortus splendens bears flowers singly or in inflorescences of up to four on thin stems. Each flower is ringed with smaller, ribbonlike, curling bracts. The bowl-shaped flowers are of varying shades of purple, often lavender, with a spot of darker purple at the base of each petal.

Henry Herman Evans, publisher and printmaker, was born in Superior, Wisconsin in May 16, 1918. He attended the University of California, Berkeley; the City College of San Francisco; the San Francisco State College; and the University of Arizona. Evans opened Porpoise Book Shop, his first bookstore, in Tucson, Arizona in 1942 but relocated in San Francisco in 1944. In 1949 he purchased an 1852 Washington Hand Press, and began producing letterpress books as Peregrine Press.

In 1958, Evans began creating botanical prints from linoleum and over thirty-one years created around 1,400 subjects, primarily illustrations of plants and flowers, with a special focus on California plants. He was self-taught as a botanist and developed his unique style of rendering portraits of plants and flowers. He drew directly from living subjects which were portrayed life-size. His wife, Marsha Onomiya Evans, printed his linocuts on the Washington Hand Press and, after the printing was completed, the blocks were destroyed. Among his numerous publications, his most important books and portfolios include The State Flowers of the United States (1972); Botanical Prints: With Excerpts from the Artist’s Notebooks (1977); and California Native Wildflowers (1985).

Henry Evans’s linocuts were included in numerous exhibitions, including Five West Coast Printmakers, at the Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh. Other exhibitions were mounted at the National Arboretum, Washington, D.C.: Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois; the Royal Horticultural Society, London; the Field Museum, Chicago; the Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C.; McGill University, Montreal, Canada; the Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis; the California Academy of Sciences, San Francisco; and the Los Angeles County Museum. His work is represented in the collections of the Albertina in Vienna; the Library of Congress and the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, D.C.; the New York Public Library; the Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley; and the McCune Collection in Vallejo, California.

Henry Herman Evans died in Saint Helena, California in 30 March 1990.