Little can be said about the explosion of twentieth century American book arts without reference to Rockwell Kent, whose prints, woodcuts and lithograph etchings have become iconic. Rockwell Kent was perhaps, the last of a vanishing breed, molded in the same clay as such American transcendentalists as Thoreau, Emerson, and Whitman. He spent much of his time travelling into the then still pristine wilderness of the early 1900’s America, and from it gaining spiritual and artistic insight. These reflections informed his illustrations for books on classical plays, history and mythology, and we can see in him still the tradition of the ‘New England Classicist’ whose love of the ancient world is only met by their love for the natural.
For the collector this is exceptionally good news, as there is still a lack of awareness of how influential artists such as Rockwell Kent really was for the book arts and printing tradition. As galleries favor the more dramatic colors and designs of the surrealists, postmodernists and the abstract expressionists, there is left quite a repository of original works by the artist Rockwell Kent, which can be snapped up by the quick collector.
Keep an eye out for Random House’s 1936 translation of Beowolf, with the artists signature thumbprint over the colophon or Harcourt Brace and Co, Gisli, Son of Sour 1936, again with original woodcut prints by Kent.
Whereas an original Rockwell Kent on its own (full size A4, A3, A2) which is one of a kind and signed can set the dedicated collector back tens of thousands of dollars, it is in his role as a woodcut illustrator that some of his most exciting and accessible work can be found. Still today, his work is being utilized by specialist publishers for high quality books such as The Baxter Society’s The Jewel: A Romance of Faerieland, originally printed in 1917, but reproduced in a limited number by Baxter in 1990. The joy of collecting someone such as Rockwell Kent, is that not only are there still affordable pieces available, but that you are also aware that you are keeping alive a period of printing history in the early American tradition.
Kent, Rockwell Thayer. Concealing-Coloration In The Animal Kingdom. Macmillan (1909). An Exposition Of The Laws Of Disguise Through Color And Pattern. Contains Copperhead Snake on Dead Leaves, painted by Rockwell Kent and Abbott Thayer, Kent's first print
Kent, Rockwell Squires,. Architectonics. The William T. Comstock Company New York (1914). illustrated by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell. The Seven Ages Of Man. Rockwell Kent (1918). 100 copies with four prints, each signed by Kent.
Kent, Rockwell Chappell,. A Basket Of Poses. Albert and Charles Boni (1924). Forty-eight full page and smaller black and white illustrations by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell. Drawings By Rockwell Kent: A Portfolio Of Prints. The Flying Stag Press (1924). 28 black and white prints
Kent, Rockwell. Paul Bunyan. Harcourt, Brace And Company New York (1924). Illustrated by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell. Voyaging Southward from the Strait of Magellan. Putnam's Sons (1924). over 70 illustrations
Kent, Rockwell. Wilderness: A Journal Of Quiet Adventure In Alaska. Putnam's Sons (1924). 65 Woodcut Illustrations
Kent, Rockwell Casanova,. The Memoirs Of Jacqoes Casanova De Seingalt. Aventuros (1925). 1000 copies with 12 drawings by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell Voltaire. Candide. Random House (1928). 1470 copies, 95 of which are hand colored by Kent
Kent, Rockwell Thoreau. On The Duty Of Civil Disobedience. At The Sign Of The Chorobates, New Haven (1928). 300 copies with title-page decoration by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell Voltaire. Candide. The Literary Guild (1929). First trade edition, after the limited edition published the year before
Kent, Rockwell Grinstead. Elva. Covici-Friede (1929). Dust jacket illustration by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell Pushkin,. Gabriel. Covici-Friede, N. Y (1929). 750 numbered copies on English hand-made paper
Kent, Rockwell. The Bookplates And Marks Of Rockwell Kent. Pynson Printers (1929). 1250 numbered copies signed by Kent
Kent, Rockwell Wilder. The Bridge At San Luis Rey. Charles Boni (1929). 1000 copies signed by Thornton Wilder and Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell Hamill. The Decorative Work Of T M Cleland: A Record And Review. The Pynson Printers (1929). 55 copies (out of 1200 total copies) signed and numbered by Cleland with a frontispiece portrait of Cleland by signed by Kent
Kent, Rockwell Voltaire. Candide. Random House (1930). later printing
Kent, Rockwell Melville,. Moby Dick or The Whale. Lakeside Press (1930). 1000 copies with 280 woodcut illustrations by Kent
Kent, Rockwell. N by E. Random House (1930). First edition of 900 copies signed by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell. N By E. Brewer and Warren (1930). illustrated woodcuts by Kent printed at Lakeside Press
Kent, Rockwell Norris. Seed. Doubleday Doram, Garden City (1930). Jacket illustration by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell Chaucer. The Canterbury Tales. Covici-Friede (1930). 924 copies with twenty-five full-page illustrations signed by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell Baker. The Five Arts. Hanover, New Hampshire (1930). steel engraving by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell. Wilderness: A Journal Of Quiet Adventure In Alaska. A Journal Of Quiet Adventure In Alaska. The Modern Library (1930). Illustrated with forty-six Kent images
Kent, Rockwell. A Birthday Book. New York Random House (1931). 1850 copies signed by Kent
Kent, Rockwell Chace. A Yankee In Patagonia. Houghton Mifflin, Boston (1931). Black and white frontispiece and introduction by Kent
Kent, Rockwell Robinson. City Child. Colophon Ltd. (1931). 300 copies signed by author
Kent, Rockwell Robinson. City Child. New York Farrar And Rinehar (1931). first trade edition
Kent, Rockwell Freuchen. Eskimo. Horace Liveright (1931). Frontis and introduction by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell Shakespeare. Venus And Adonis. Rochester: Leo Hart (1931). 75 copies on hand-made paper with an extra suite of plates. Total 1250 copies with 21 wood engravings by Kent.
Kent, Rockwell Leonard. Beowulf. Random House NY (1932). Limited edition of 950 copies signed with Rockwell Kent's thumb print
Kent, Rockwell Faulkner. Light In August. Harrison Smith and Robert Haas (1932). Illustrated with a title page woodcut by Rockwell Kent.
Kent, Rockwell Armitage. Rockwell Kent. Alfred A. Knopf (1932). 500 copies with 13 reproductions
Kent, Rockwell Vercel. In Sight Of Eden. Harcourt, Brace And Company (1933). Woodcut illustrations and jacket designed by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell Zigrosser. Rockwellkentiana. NY Harcourt Brace and Co (1933). Color frontispiece and over 130 b/w woodcut illustrations by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell Alexander. Candy The $10,000. Prize Novel.. Dodd Mead and Company New York (1934). full page woodcuts of the main characters by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell Chaucer. Canterbury Tales. Covici Friede / Garden City Publishing (1934). illustrated by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell Butler. Erewhon. Limited Editions Club (1934). Illustrated in color and line by Rockwell Kent, 1500 copies
Kent, Rockwell Buck. Fifty Years 1884-1934. R. R. Donneley, Lakeside Press (1934). illustrated by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell Rich,. Hans The Eskimo. Boston, Houghton Mifflin Company (1934). Woodcut illustrations and jacket designed by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell. How I Make A Wood Cut. Pasadena, California: Esto Publishing Co (1934). One of 1000 printed by Ward Ritchie with 4 black and white wood cuts
Kent, Rockwell Powell. Robinson Jeffers: The Man And His Work. The Primavera Press (1934). Decorations by Kent. 750 copies, designed by Ward Ritchie
Kent, Rockwell. Salamina. Harcourt, Brace (1935). illustrated by Kent with a double-page map and 84 illustrations
Kent, Rockwell Merrick. Ever The Winds Blow. Charles Scribner's Sons and London (1936). Rockwell Kent dustjacket
Kent, Rockwell Whitman. Leaves of Grass. The Heritage Press (1936). Printed at the lakeside Press. 1000 copies signed by Rockwell Kent.
Kent, Rockwell Shakespeare. The Complete Works of Shakespeare. Garden City: Doubleday, Doran (1936). 750 copies signed by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell Allen,. The Saga Of Gisli Son Of Sour. Harcourt Brace New York (1936). Woodcuts by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell. Later Bookplates and Marks Of Rockwell Kent. Pynson Printers (1937). over 60 engraved illustrations (some in duotone)
Kent, Rockwell Melville. Moby Dick Or The Whale. Garden City Publishing Co (1937). illustrated by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell Stefansson. Unsolved Mysteries Of The Arctic. The Macmillan Co. (1938). 200 copies signed by the author with signed frontispiece by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell. This is My Own. Duell, Sloan and Pearce (1940). illustrations by Rockwell Kent include 10 plates ,chapter heads and various cuts totalling 95 illustrations
Kent, Rockwell. A Northern Christmas. American Artists Group (1941). illustrations by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell Northern Christmas. American Artists Group. Northern Christmas. American Artists Group (1941). Book designed by Ward Ritchie. Woodcuts by Kent. 100 copies signed by Kent.
Kent, Rockwell Shephard. Paul Bunyan. Harcourt Brace NY (1941). illustrated and designed by Kent
Kent, Rockwell Broch. The Mountains Wait. Saint Paul Webb Book Publishing Co (1942). black-and-white drawings by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell Broch. The Mountains Wait. Michael Joseph Ltd London (1943). black-and-white drawings by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell. To Thee - A Toast In Celebration Of A Century Of Opportunity And Accomplishment In America 1847-1947. Rahr Malting Company New York (1946). Sixty pages of illustrations and text by Kent
Kent, Rockwell Boccaccio. The Decameron Of Giovanni Boccaccio. Garden City Publishing (1949). 1500 copies with thirty-two full-page illustrations by Kent
Kent, Rockwell Hyde,. Southern Cross. Ward Ritchie Press (1951). Silhouette woodcut by Kent in red on front board
Kent, Rockwell. The Mad Hermit: Seven Drawings from Wilderness. Asgaard Press (1955). 500 copies signed by Kent
Kent, Rockwell. Greenland Journal. Ivan Obolensky (1962). 1000 numbered copies with 6 original lithographs, one signed by Rockwell Kent
Kent, Rockwell. Rockwell Kent 1882-1971. National Council Of American-Soviet Friendship (1971). Booklet and 27 plates in a porfolio
Kent, Rockwell Jones. Prints Of Rockwell Kent, A Catalogue Raisonne. The University Of Chicago Press (1975). definitive catalogue raissone of Kent's prints, more than three hundred reproductions, many copies signed
Kent, Rockwell Johnson. The Illustrations Of Rockwell Kent: 231 Examples. Dover Publications (1976). Chronological list of books from which illustrations have been reproduced
Kent, Rockwell West,. An Enkindled Eye: The Paintings Of Rockwell Kent. Santa Barbara Museum Of Art, Santa Barbara (1985). 87 works catalogued and illustrated
Kent, Rockwell. The Jewel: A Romance of Fairyland. The Baxter Society (1990). a facsimile edition, limited to 500 copies