Bill “Bojangles” Robinson: Born May 25, 1878

SundayNews

“The Hot Mikado,” starring Bill “Bojangles” Robinson, was a big Broadway hit. It was noted for its wild costuming and all black cast. It ran at the Broadhurst Theater, in Manhattan, from March 23 to June 3, 1939.
Producer Mike Todd announced he was moving the show to the New York World’s Fair. The show became one of the biggest hits at the fair and opened at the Hall of Music on June 22, 1939.
http://www.qchron.com/qboro/i_have_often_walked/bill-bojangles-robinson/article_81b0281a-c1ee-5853-ae31-f810fb8b92a7.html

Silent movie film footage of the Michael Todd production at the New York World’s Fair 1939-1940:

Erskine Hawkins Orchestra – Two Selections from “Hot Mikado”~
https://archive.org/details/ErskineHawkinsOrchestra-TwoSelectionsFromhotMikado

The New York Public Library Digital Collections: “Hot Mikado”~
http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/collections/vandamm-theatrical-photographs-1900-1957#/?tab=navigation&roots=0e546ea0-c5ab-012f-2db0-58d385a7bc34/80:a36a93d0-c5ac-012f-0fad-58d385a7bc34

HotMikadoOvrtur database for “Hot Mikado”~ http://www.ovrtur.com/production/2880750#pagetop

Bill “Bojangles” Robinson~ http://atdf.org/awards/bojangles.html

Emanuel Gottlieb Leutze: Born May 24, 1816

WashingtonWashington Crossing the Delaware, 1851 • Emanuel Gottlieb Leutze
Oil on canvas; 149 x 255 in. (378.5 x 647.7 cm)

Leutze’s depiction of a critical moment during the American revolution has become one of the best known and most extensively published images in American history. He portrays George Washington, accompanied by some 2,500 of his troops, crossing the Delaware River about nine miles above Trenton, New Jersey, in a surprise attack on the Hessians. The strategic crossing took place after midnight on December 25, 1776; ice floes and a heavy snowstorm kept the American soldiers and their allies from reaching shore until daybreak, which Leutze captured with the morning star overhead.
http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/works-of-art/97.34

Crossing of the Delaware: http://www.mountvernon.org/research-collections/digital-encyclopedia/article/crossing-of-the-delaware/
Emanuel Gottlieb Leutze…German-born American historical painter whose picture Washington Crossing the Delaware (1851) numbers among the most popular and widely reproduced images of an American historical event.
http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/337776/Emanuel-Gottlieb-Leutze

Artist Birthday Quiz for 5/23~

What Abstract Expressionist artist’s use of housepainter brushes produced tiny splatters and inflections on the canvas that enhanced the explosive quality of his black lines?

What sculptor’s work was inspired in part by the craftsmanship of the local carpenters in Sierra Leone, where he spent two years with the Peace Corps?

Answers here~ https://schristywolfe.com/2015/05/23/may-23/

Margaret Wise Brown: Born May 23, 1910

https://www.britannica.com/biography/Margaret-Wise-Brown
http://www.waterborolibrary.org/MWI_detail.php?authID=367

Margaret Wise Brown’s life was full of what her admirers like to call whimsy and other people might call childlike behavior. She spent her first royalty check on an entire flower cart full of flowers. At her house in Maine, which she called “The Only House,” she had an outdoor boudoir with a table and nightstand and a mirror nailed to a tree, along with an outside well that held butter and eggs, and wine bottles kept cold in a stream; one could easily imagine a little fur family living in “The Only House,” but it was just her friends, associates, editors, and lovers passing through. She was once chastised by a hotel owner in Paris because she had brought giant orange trees and live birds into her room. The orange trees might have been OK, the owner thought, but the live birds were a little de trop.
http://www.slate.com/articles/arts/roiphe/2012/03/the_restless_life_of_margaret_wise_brown_author_of_goodnight_moon_.html

Richard Wagner~ Born May 22, 1813

Early in his career, Wagner learned both the elements and the practical, political realities of his craft by writing a handful of operas which were unenthusiastically, even angrily, received. Beginning with Rienzi (1838-40) and The Flying Dutchman (1841), however, he enjoyed a string of successes that propelled him to immortality and changed the face of music. His monumental Ring cycle of four operas — Das Rheingold (1853-54), Die Walküre (1854-56), Siegfried (1856-71) and Götterdämmerung (1869-74) — remains the most ambitious and influential contribution by any composer to the opera literature.
http://www.allmusic.com/artist/richard-wagner-mn0000958980/biography

The Brilliant, Troubled Legacy of Richard Wagner

A great music lover, Renoir was one of the first admirers of Wagner in France. At the beginning of 1882, when the painter was travelling in the south of Italy, he had the opportunity to visit Palermo where Wagner was staying. After two fruitless attempts, Renoir was finally introduced to the “maestro” who, the day before, had put the final notes to Parsifal.
The course of this meeting is well known thanks to a letter from Renoir to one of his friends, dated 15 January 1882:
http://www.musee-orsay.fr/en/collections/works-in-focus/search/commentaire/commentaire_id/richard-wagner-11042.html?no_cache=1

Artist Birthday Quiz for 5/22~

The only American officially associated with the group later known as the Impressionists, this artist exhibited her work in four of their eight exhibitions, in 1879, 1880, 1881, and 1886.

This famous Belgian illustrator is often considered to be the most influential European comic artist ever and his “clear line” style was widely copied by new generation of comic artists

Answers here~ https://schristywolfe.com/2015/05/22/may-22/

Artist Birthday Quiz for 5/21~

Which German artist of the Renaissance period revolutionized printmaking, elevating it to the level of an independent art form?

Which artist, best known for his paintings teeming with exotic flora and fauna, actually never left France despite stories to the contrary?

Answers here~ https://schristywolfe.com/2015/05/21/may-21/

Fats Waller: Born May 21, 1904

Waller, Fats (21 May 1904-15 Dec. 1943), jazz and popular pianist, singer, and songwriter, was born Thomas Wright Waller in New York City, the son of Edward Martin Waller, a Baptist preacher, and Adeline Lockett. From age six Waller was devoted to the piano but initially failed to practice properly or learn to read music well, because he could memorize lessons immediately. In his youth he also played reed organ in church. He studied piano, string bass, and violin at P.S. 89, which he attended to about age fourteen or fifteen. Although his girth had earned him a nickname by this time, the names Thomas and Fats appeared interchangeably (and sometimes together, as Thomas “Fats” Waller) in his professional work until at least 1931. Later in his career, and posthumously, the nickname prevailed.

Intermittently from 1919 into the mid-1920s he played organ at the Lincoln Theater in Harlem. After his mother’s death in 1920, he moved in with the family of pianist Russell Brooks, who introduced Waller to James P. Johnson. Upon discovering that Waller had learned “Carolina Shout” from Johnson’s piano roll, Johnson offered Waller piano lessons and in turn introduced him to Willie “the Lion” Smith, whom Waller replaced at Leroy’s saloon. Johnson, Smith, and Waller became the leading figures in the jazz style that came to be called stride piano, and through the decade their improvisational competitions were a fixture of Harlem rent parties.
http://www.anb.org/articles/18/18-01201.html

Norma Bassett Hall, American printmaker: Born May 21, 1889

NBHOne

Norma Bassett Hall was an American woodblock printmaker who often depicted landscapes and outdoor scenes. She was born in Halsey, Oregon. In 1910, she become a member of the inaugural class of the Museum Art School in Portland, Oregon. After leaving Portland, she briefly taught in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, before continuing her education at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago from 1915-1918. She also studied privately with the noted British printmaker Mabel Royds, who introduced Norma to the Japanese method of printing woodcuts on rice paper with transparent watercolors. While studying at the SAIC, Norma Bassett met and would later NBHTwomarry Arthur William Hall, a fellow student and artist. Following their marriage, they made their home in Kansas, becoming deeply involved with the state’s flourishing printmaking culture and helping to found the Prairie Print Makers. Hall, the only female among the group’s eleven charter members, designed their distinctive logo, a monogram set within a stylized sunflower. Hall and her husband divided their time and subjects between the rolling hills of Kansas and the dramatic vistas of New Mexico. In 1944 the couple permanently relocated to New Mexico, living first in Santa Fe and eventually purchasing an estate near Alcade from which they operated an art school. Bassett Hall continued to work and teach from their estate until her death in 1957. ~Wikipedia

 

Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art~
http://jsma.uoregon.edu/jordan-schnitzer-museum-art-opens-first-solo-exhibition-norma-bassett-hall-1957
Biographies~
http://beyondbutler.wix.com/beyondbutler#!norma-bassett-hall-bio-link-/ccrh
http://casewardprintmaker.com/Mentor/Norma_Bassett_Hall.html
Artnet~ http://www.artnet.com/artists/norma-bassett-hall/past-auction-results