The Gardens of Kijkuit
Baltimore: Norman Munder, 1919. 4to. (12 x 8 1/2). With 56 half-tone photographic illustrations reproducing celebrated Arnold Genthe's photographs and a fold-out plan of John D. Rockefeller's country estate. Text by the estate architect Welles Bosworth.
Publisher's quarter cloth and boards, bound with gray cloth ties in the Japanese manner. Exceptionally nice copy of a fragile book.
Visual examination of the gardens at Kijkuit, a Beaux-Arts garden on The Rockefeller country estate.
This book features the gardens at Kijkuit, a John D. Rockefeller country estate near Tarrytown, NY. Kijkuit -- meaning look-out -- was the name given by the 17th century Dutch settlers to the hill-top on which the Rockefeller country estate was eventually built. The gardens were designed by Welles Bosworth who has written a Foreword and brief text with the later assistance of the architects Delano and Aldrich. The gardens were designed in the fashionable neoclassical style influenced by Italian gardens (see Edith Wharton's Italian Villas and Their Gardens). One of the best surviving examples of Beaux-Arts gardens in the United States. The half-tone illustrations reproduce Arnold Genthe's beautifully evocative photographs of the gardens. Genthe (1869-1942), one of the best known photographers of the early 20th century, began experimenting with photography when he arrived in San Francisco in 1895 despite being trained as an academic in Germany. Here he gained acclaim for his photographs of Chinatown and the destruction of the 1906 earthquake, and eventually as a portraitist which brought him to New York in 1911. He gathered an impressive clientele that included presidents, stars of stage and screen, socialites, and celebrities, including John D. Rockefeller, Jr. who he photographed in 1925.
"Beyond 'A Photographic Mask': An Introduction to Arnold Genthe," New York Historical Society; Arnold Genthe, "John D. Rockefeller, Jr."