BACHMANN, After JOHN
New York City Hall, Park and Environs
New York: [ca. 1849]. Tinted lithograph with additional hand-coloring, 13 1/2 x 18 1/4 inches. Matted and framed.
New York City Hall.
An attractive view of Broadway, New York City by famed artist John Bachmann, who was, at the time, only at the beginning of a brilliant printmaking career. According to Reps, Bachmann executed two views of New York City in 1849, though Reps does not record this one. Here, Bachmann portrays Broadway in a clean and very inviting manner. "Along the broad thoroughfare moves a smart array of carriages, coaches, and fashionably-dressed pedestrians. The fountain playing in the imperfect triangle of City Hall Park had now permanently replaced the temporary one erected there during the Croton Water Celebration that took place there in 1842. Beyond the fountain is City Hall itself, admired by residents and visitors alike for its architectural splendor: a successful adaptation of French Renaissance and American colonial influences" - Deak. Bachmann's reputation as a fine artist, lithographer, and printer is assured through his work, even if only considering his New York City views. Little is known of the man himself, though he is believed to have emigrated from Germany in the 1840s, bringing with him a fully-developed style and competence unusual for the period. "No finer artist of city views worked in America than John Bachmann" - Reps. A fantastic and rare view of New York's famed City Hall, an important depiction of lower Manhattan and Broadway in the middle of the 19th century.
Deak, Picturing America 596; Reps, Views & Viewmakers, pp.160-61; Stokes, Iconography of Manhattan Island III, p.902; Stokes & Haskell, American Historical Prints, ca. 1849-E-117, p.105.