A Charley Harper Valentine’s Day

Vowlentine by Charley Harper

Vowlentine by Charley Harper

Happy Valentine’s Day from Fabulous Frames & Art! We are absolutely smitten by Vowlentine, a charming owl print by the one and only Modernist artist and nature lover Charley Harper.

Here’s what Charley had to say about this 1985 limited-edition serigraph in his book Beguiled by the Wild:

Put a fancy lace border around these barn owls and you could send them to your sweetie on February 14. “Be mine!” you could say, “I love you with all my hearts!” Or when you’re ready to pop the question: “Let’s owlope.” And on your anniversary: “You’re still as owlluring as ever.” For Flag Day: “I pledge owllegiance.” Then there’s Cowlumbus Day and Owlection Day. And Christmas! “Owlleluia.” Oops, almost forgot Howloween. Maybe we’d better start listing them — owlphabetically.

Charley Harper was born in Frenchton, West Virginia in 1922, and studied at the Art Academy of Cincinnati, where he met his wife Edie. During his long and distinguished career, he illustrated numerous books, including The Golden Book of Biology, magazines such as Ford Times, as well as many prints, posters, murals, and other works. His work focused on the natural environment, and Harper often created works for nature-based organizations, among them the National Park Service; Cincinnati Zoo; Cincinnati Nature Center; Hamilton County, Ohio Park District; and Hawk Mountain Sanctuary in Pennsylvania.

Harper was best known for his highly stylized wildlife prints, posters and book illustrations. He called his style Minimal Realism, capturing the essence of his subjects with the fewest possible visual elements. Using graphic shapes and bold colors, Harper distilled and simplified complex elements. His nature-oriented artwork is often contrasted with the realism of John James Audubon and the simplicity found in Inuit Art.

Cincinnati-based Fabulous Frames & Art is a family-owned business and the world’s largest dealer in the work of Charley Harper, including his books, serigraphs, lithographs, giclee prints, and posters. We are proud to also carry work by Charley’s wife Edie Harper and their son Brett Harper.


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