M. C. Escher - Newspapers

Of interest regarding Escher's work and subsequent development and popularity is to examine newspaper references. Only in relatively recent times, with the advent of the internet and the making available by commercial and national library concerns of newspaper publishers is this detail readily available. Before this listing, any mention of Escher’s work in newspapers was largely lost, and was only occasionally discussed in pre internet days, for the very good reason being that this resource was not searchable, at least with ease. No one in their right mind would spend their time examining old newspaper archives in person on the off chance of finding an occasional Escher reference! However, even with the wonders of modern day assistance, the task is still of a Herculean nature, albeit now, rather than a famine, there is a flood! There is no one (large) database of the entire world’s press. Indeed, the papers are most fragmentary, with National libraries, such as the National Library of Australia (NLA), and various bodies offering a broad selection, and individual papers, such as The New York Times (NYT) retaining their own copy. Further, some are free, such as the NLA, and indeed, many others of a good quality service, whilst with others a subscription is required such as the NYT. Simply stated, by its very nature, any in-depth investigation of ‘all’ newspapers is hindered somewhat. However, it is still possible to be extremely thorough without an all-encompassing, exhaustive approach. The amount of time required for such an exhaustive analysis is simply judged disproportionate as to worth, and this is without taking into consideration non-English papers! (Although I have briefly delved into Dutch papers, for obvious reasons.) And then there is the problem of defining of what to include as ‘Escher’, which is more involved than one may think. The references vary enormously, from a simple, inconsequential  name check in passing, such as ‘as in a M. C. Escher drawing/print’, to reviews, letters, television listings, exhibit listings, merchandise, such as books, T-shirts and calendars to name but a few, to whole pages on Escher, and everything in between. Simply stated, the task is overwhelming, and so of necessity I am purposefully restrict my choice of copy to include in the listing below. Many references are simply too minor to detail, and yet if so omitted one is open to questions of propriety. Simply stated, there is no hard and fast dividing line between ‘worthless’ and ‘worthwhile’ content. However, I am more inclined to add all, no matter how trivial, concerning the ‘early references’, defined as pre 1968, when the Escher craze took off. This being so, I thus err on the side of thoroughness, and include ‘all’ copy pre 1968, this being a practical proposition, with just nine references. After 1968, I am more judicious in my selections, with only copy of some note recorded or the first instance of listings as above.
    Each reference, in chronological order, is accompanied with the references presented in the following order: author (if known), the title of the writing, the newspaper title, with dates, followed by the work pictured (if indeed so), in brackets, along with other commentary detail of my own if considered appropriate. Predominantly, the papers are of the US, and where otherwise this is stated in brackets after the paper. As a rule, copy with an image is generally of more interest than otherwise.

As such, this is a work in progress, and will likely be so for a considerable while, with new releases as time permits. Predominantly, the papers are of the US, where otherwise this is in brackets after the paper title. Sources accessed include:
Newspaperarchive.com (US local papers, not national papers)
The British Newspaper Archive (UK local, not national papers)
The New York Times (subscription required)
            National Library of Australia (free)
An open question is to the point of all this. Is it merely ‘stamp collecting’ or truly of Escher scholarship? However, one can at least see when the fad for Escher took off in a popular context, of 1968 onwards. Certainly, what new insight have been gained is most minor indeed, and is disproportionate as to the lengthy time expanded on this project. But here it is….

 

1934

Anon. ‘ART PRIZE TO NEW YORKER. Tittle Wins at Chicago With Portrait of Augustus John." Special to The New York Times June 5, 1934, p. 21

M. C. Escher of Holland took the Alfred E. Hamill prize for his lithograph, “Noza [sic], Corsica”.

Of note as the apparent first, brief recorded reference to Escher in newspapers, of the Institute of the Chicago exhibit of 1934, preceding by 12 days a like report by Mary Alexander (below). However, this gives more background detail to the exhibit in a general sense. This is believed a new finding by myself, having not seen this before in any quoted Escher bibliographies. Can anyone find an earlier reference?

 

Mary L. Alexander. ‘The Week In Art Circles’. The Cincinnati Enquirer. June 17 1934, p. 5

Among a discussion of ‘The Week In Art Circles’, is a detailed account of prizes awarded  in a Century of Progress exhibition of prints, with a brief mention (but not illustrated) of Escher, more or less in passing:

The third prize of $25, in this section, given by Alfred G. Hamill, was won by M. C. Escher, a Dutch artist, for his print Nonza, Corsica

As an aside, of note is that 23 years later, in 1957, Alexander once again reviewed Escher’s work for the same paper!

 

1935

Fred J. Melville, ‘The Art of the Postage Stamp’. The Illustrated London News Saturday, November 30, 1935. (U.K), p. 3

The stamp is sold as a supplement of 4 cents for the Dutch National Air Fund. The designer was M. C. Escher, whose initials appear in the lower left angle of the of the map

Among a many-faceted discussion of postage stamps is a brief account of one of Escher’s, of a postage stamp for the National Aviation Fund. Although this is not the first reference to Escher in newspapers, this is indeed the first known instance of an image of his work in newspapers. This is believed a new finding by myself, not having seen this in Escher bibliographies.

 

1949

‘Enrico’.‘The Stamp Corner’. The Winnipeg Tribune. Saturday September 10 1949, p. 31

… The design was produced by M. C. Escher of Baarn…

Among a many-faceted discussion of new stamp releases of five counties worldwide, one of which includes Escher’s for the Netherlands, of ‘Post Horns’. Although not the first appearance of an Escher image in print, is this the first recorded instance of Escher's in the US press?

 

1954

Anon. ‘Dutch Graphic Art’. The Times (UK). Tuesday December 14 1954 p. 7

Among a many-faceted discussion of prints by Dutch artists in an UK Arts Council exhibit at the New Burlington Galleries, Escher gets a brief mention:

The Other World [sic] (Another World)

 

1957

Mary L. Alexander. ‘Colored Woodcuts Are Displayed In Gallery’s Exhibit At Museum’. The Cincinnati Enquirer. Sunday March 31 1957, p. 7

Exhibition at Victoria and Albert Museum, London shown at the Cincinnati Art Museum.

 

1961

Advert. For ‘The Graphic Work of M. C. Escher’. The Times (UK). Thursday, April 6, 1961, p. 15

 

1968

Otto Dekom. ‘Books in the News. Dutch artist’. The Morning News Tuesday January 30 1968

A review of The Graphic Work of M. C. Escher.

 

Mary King. ‘SIU Campus Art Exhibit’. St Louis Post Despatch Wednesday July 24 1968

An exhibition in the communications building of the Edwardsville Campus of South Illinois University, titled ‘Dada, Surrealism and Today’. Brief mention of Relativity.

 

Anon. ‘De Verbeeldingswereld van Maurits C. Escher’. Nieusblad van het Noorden 12 June 1968 biz 17

(In Dutch)

Ripple and Mobuis Band.

 

1969

Anon. ‘Television Highlights’. The Ottawa Journal. Thursday February 6 1969

Television listings. Man at the Centre. ‘Escher’. Produced for the CBC by Douglas Leiterman. A film looking at ‘little-known’ Escher. Does anyone know of this? is there a recording in existence?

 

Bay area entertainment week calendar - Arts. Oakland Tribune. Sunday May 25 1969

Brief mention of Escher in passing at the Vorpal Galleries (with other exhibiting artists).

 

1970

Anon. ‘Sleeves to save. Illustrated London News, Saturday 3 January 1970, p. 22

Mott the Hoople with Escher’s ‘Reptiles’ cover. amid a discussion on record sleeves.

 

Jared Johnson. ‘Dylan has influence on Mott the Hoople’. The Morning News. Tuesday June 27 1970

Brief mention of ‘German artists’ [sic] Escher of his cover for Mott the Hoople, the subject of the piece.

 

Elise Emery, Arts Editor. ‘View from up, down, around’. Independent Press Telegram. Sunday November 29 1970

(Day and Night)

An exhibit at Gallery B of California State College.

 

Kenner, Hugh. From Cliché to Archetype The New York Times December 13, 1970, p. ?

(Sphere Spirals)

Apparent book review.

 

1971

Jared Johnson. ‘Top albums of ’70’. The Morning News. Tuesday January 2 1971, p. 19

A review of fourteen albums as the best of 1970 as ‘honours of distinction (or otherwise)’. Escher’s cover ‘House of Stairs’ of the ‘Mandrake Memorial’ Puzzle voted best cover.

 

Anon. ‘Art-Science Show at PSU this weekend’. The Express. Wednesday July 14 1971

Minor mention of Escher at an Art-Science show.

 

Charles Westheimer. ‘Catalog reflects vitality and variety in modern life’. The Cincinnati Enquirer.

Thursday September 9 1971

On ‘The Last Whole Earth Catalog’, with a name check only.

 

Anon. ‘Next week in Ames’. Ames Daily Tribune. Saturday 31 July 1971

Brief mention of Escher in passing at a Donald Bailey crystallography gathering.

 

Ger Kruis. ‘De wonderbaarlijke weelden van Escher in bijzonder boek’. Zaterdag 27 November 1971

(Circle Limit I, Hand with Reflecting Sphere)

In depth article, in Dutch.

 

1972

 

Anon. ‘Sentinel Television Log’. Santa Cruz Sentinel. Friday 21 April 1972

Television programme M. C. Escher.

 

Tom Carter. ‘Maurits Escher. Little-known artist packs exhibition’. The Argus, Wednesday, May 17 1972, p. 24

(Waterfall)

Apparently of San Francisco, Vorpal Galleries. Muldoon Elder, the gallery owner is mentioned.

 

Charles D. Perlee. ‘The Lively Arts – Books-Music-Art-Drama’. The Sanberdino County. Sun May 14 1972, D-13

(Waterfall)

Apparently of San Francisco, Vorpal Galleries. Muldoon Elder, the gallery owner is mentioned.

 

Tom Carter. ‘Surrealist played games in art’. Green Bay Press Gazette Sunday June 18 1972, p.9

(Waterfall)

The first line begins ‘San Francisco – now lets see where the logic falls…’ which is syndicated in two other papers.

 

David L. Shirey. ‘Art: Escher Prints Shown at La Boetie’. The New York Times July 8, 1972, p. 12

(Waterfall)

Discussion on the exhibit.

 

C. V. S Roosevelt (To the editor) ‘Art Mailbag Escher: The People’s Choice?’ The New York Times Sunday, August 13, 1972, p. 163

Roosevelt defends Escher against Schjeldahl’s diatribe.

 

Anon. The Cincinnati Enquirer August 6 1972

 

Robert Patrick. (To the editor) ‘Art Mailbag Escher: The People’s Choice?’ The New York Times Sunday, August 13, 1972, p. 163

Patrick defends Escher against Schjeldahl’s diatribe.

 

John L Smith. ‘Art Mailbag Escher: The People’s Choice?’ The New York Times August 13, 1972, p. 163

Smith defends Escher against Schjeldahl’s diatribe, and with a timely and witty put down.

 

Christopher J. Heinrich. (To the editor) ‘Art Mailbag Escher: The People’s Choice?’ The New York Times August 13, 1972, p. 163

Heinrich defends Escher against Schjeldahl’s diatribe.

 

Anon. ‘Art Gallery Notes’. Weekend The Times. Saturday September 23 1972, p. 15A

Brief mention of Escher exhibit at the College Union Art Gallery among other art exhibit in the region.

 

Anon. ‘Optical Illusion’. The Clarion Ledger, Jackson Daily News October 8, 1972

(Waterfall)

 

Anon. In Review. ‘Escher Gets What’s Due’. Rochester N.Y. Wednesday October 18 1972

(Self Portrait)

Review of The World of M. C. Escher.

 

Anon. ‘World of Books. New At The Public Library’. Freeport Journal Standard Saturday October 21 1972

A listing of new books at the Freeport public library, including The World of M. C. Escher.

 

Anon. ‘UCSC Art Show’. Santa Cruz Sentinel. Tuesday November 7 1972

Exhibit at Merrill College library

 

Anon. Ad. St Louis Dispatch. Sunday November 26 1972

Ad for The World of M. C. Escher

 

Anon. ‘Sentinel Television Log’. Santa Cruz Sentinel. Friday 21 April 1972

Television programme ‘M. C. Escher’

 

Anon. The Courier Journal. Sunday September 3 1972

 

Kirchhoff, Barney. European Stars and Stripes, p. 21-23 1972 /08-04/ page-21-23

(Relativity)

Major article. This mentions, among other matters ‘The Whole Earth Catalog’, a reference I was unaware of at the time.

 

1973

Elise Emery, arts editor. ‘The now and future museums’. Independent Press Telegram. Sunday January 28 1973

(Day and Night)

On the Natural History exhibit at ***

 

? Escher Reception. Star News. Tuesday January 9 1973, Pasadena California

(Exhibit at the National History Museum)

 

Hubert Crehan. ‘The Nothing-Is-As-It-Seems World Of Maurits C. Escher’. St Louis Post Dispatch February 11 1973

(Day and Night)

 

? ‘His Up Is Down’. The Cincinnati Enquirer. Sunday March 18 1973

(Belvedere, Another World, Sky and Water I Circle Limit IV).

A major piece.

 

Hardwick, Elizabeth. The New York Times, May 13, 1973, p. 339-340.

An in-depth book review of The Summer Before Dark, by Doris Lessing.

(Rind)

Illustrations in the book by Escher on pp. 1, 3, 5, 7, 12, 16, 18 and 27.

 

Anon. ‘in society’. The Cincinnati Enquirer. April 5 1973

A name check, of the Dine/Kitaj exhibition.

 

Anon. ‘Dine/Kitaj Opening Hostesses Are Named’. The Cincinnati Enquirer. Wednesday April 11 1973

A name check

 

Anon. ‘Current Art Calendar’. The Courier Journal. Sunday April 15, 22 1973

A name check

 

Anon. ‘Works of Dutch Artist Set for Detroit Display’. The Holland, Michigan, Evening Sentinel. May 25 1973

(Cycle)

 

Jellinek, Roger. ‘Mythology as a Science’. The New York Times, May 12, 1973, Saturday p. 31

Name check in a book review.

 

Ann Schecter. ‘Escher’s Ingenious prints mix art, scientific logic’, Sunday, November 4 1973

(Self Portrait, Belvedere)

 

Anon. ‘Natural History Museum Shows M.C. Escher’s Art’. Van Nuys (Calif) Thursday, March 8? 1973

 

1974

Anon. Anon. St Louis Post Dispatch. Sunday May 12 1974, p. 12, 17

Major piece (Sky and Water I, Puddle, House of Stairs, Drawing Hands, Reptiles.

 

Anon. ‘The Shop’. The Cincinnati Enquirer Wednesday May 29 1974

Name check.

 

Anon. ‘Escher prints given to National Gallery’. The Courier Sunday June 9 1974

Cornelius van Schaak Roosevelt gift.

 

Anon. ‘What’s New in Art’ The New York Times, August 11, 1974, Sunday, p. 116.

Brief listing of National Gallery Art exhibit.

 

Anon. The Van Wert Times Bulletin, Wednesday October 9 1974

 

1975

Anon. ‘Paper Back Talk’. The New York Times, July 20, 1975, Sunday, p. 115. Name check re calendars.

 

Anon. Television. Listing The New York Times, July 21, 1975, Wednesday, p. 67.

The World of M.C. Escher.

 

Anon. Arts and Leisure Guide. The New York Times August 24, 1975, p. 108

Vorpal Gallery exhibit. Listing

 

Leslie Burleson. ‘Post Mortem: A Tribute’. El Paso Prospector Headframe Humanities Review

14 October 1975

(Reptiles, Waterfall, Cycle, Ascending and Descending)

A major piece on Escher.

 

Anon. ‘Mining the Arts. Escher ignores convention’. The Montana Standard September 7 1975

(Sky and Water I)

 

Donald Miller. ‘Woodblock Prints Of Escher on View’. Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Friday October 3 1975

(Hand with Globe)

 

Anon. Whirlpools. San Rafael Independent Journal. Tuesday October 21 1975

(Whirlpools)

 

1976

 

Anon. ‘Byck Gallery Opening’. The Courier Journal. Sunday March 14 1976

Name check

 

Anon. ‘M. C. Escher’ The Age (Australia). Wednesday June 9 1976

Ad for the ‘Expression’ company of Escher posters

 

Anon. ‘Escher’s symmetry’. The Courier Journal. Sunday September 12 1976

(Lizards, PD **)

 

Angela Taylor. ‘When All the Pieces Fit Hang Them on the Wall’. The New York Times September 12, 1976, p. 76

(Belvedere)

Jigsaw-related aspects, by Elliot Gallin.

 

Anon. ‘Bramwell Fletcher To Open Sharon Arts Exhibition’. Sentinel-Enterprise Fitchburg, Mass. November 16, 1976, p. 17

(Encounter)

 

Anon. Anon. The Courier. Sunday December 12 1976

(Escher self portrait)

Brief review of The Magic Mirror of M. C. Escher.

 

Anon. ‘Tankstream Bookshop’. The Sydney Morning Herald (Australia). Saturday December 18 1976

Ad for Escher calendar.

 

Clara Hieronymus, reviewer. ‘Fantasies of M.C. Escher, Art in Courtroom Studied’. Tennessean Sun, December 26, 1976 (the ‘Art in Courtroom’ is unconnected, referring to another book)

Review of Fantasy & Symmetry (no illustrations).

 

1977

Shirley Patterson. ‘Modest artist worth studying’. The Morning News Saturday January 15 1977

Review of The Magic Mirror of M. C. Escher

(Belvedere, Self Portrait, 1943)

 

Anon. ‘Mathematics. Doris Schattschneider’. The Ottawa Journal. Monday October 31 1977

Flier for Doris Schattsneider lecture on Escher.

 

Anon. ‘Deception in Art’. Democrat and Chronicle. Thursday June 16 1977

Brief mention to Escher in passing. Of note is the piece itself; of interest!

 

1978

J. B. Gadsdon, reviewer. ‘Master printmaker’. The Sydney Morning Herald (Australia). Saturday January 14 1978

Review of The Magic Mirror of M. C. Escher.

(Drawing Hands, Self Portrait, 1943, Day and Night)

 

Anon. Art. The Courier. Sunday January 15 1978

Escher mention in passing.

 

1980

Malcolm W. Browne. The Creativity of Melvin Calvin: In Search of the Good Idea. The New York Times. Tuesday, November 4, 1980, pp. 37-38

Escher mention in passing in a piece on Melvin Calvin.

 

1986

Anon. ‘Community Invited to Free Events’. Frederick News-Post. February 1986?, p. 9

(Sky and Water I)

 

Anon. ‘Art of Escher to be topic of Hood lecture’. The Frederick Post. March 5 1986 (10 March 2015)

Math and art lecture by Doris Schattschneider.

(Waterfall)

 

1991

David Steinberg. ‘The uniquely symmetrical perceptions of M. C Escher’. The Arts, Albuquerque Journal. Sunday October 27 1991

(Day and Night Self Portrait 1943, Belvedere)

An exhibit.

 

1992

Anon. Ad. ‘Eschecize Your Mind’. Akron Beach Journal. Thursday April 30 1992

Gifts on T-Shirts.

 

1993

Anon. Ad. Reno Gazette Monday November 29 1993

Ad for M. C. Escher: his Life and Graphic Work.

 

1994

Evan Levine. Guide to videos. ‘Escher's playfulness missing in video’. The Paris News Sunday November 13 1994

(Downbeat) review of the video The Fantastic World of M. C. Escher

 

1995

Diane Heilenman. Viewpoints ‘And farther north’. The Courier Journal Sunday December 3 1995

On a exhibition at the National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa

(Hand with Reflecting Globe)

 

1996

Reon Carter. ‘Escher’s lizards puzzling project’. The Cincinnati Enquirer. Friday December 13 1996

‘Imagination Project’ of soft foam puzzle lizards

 

1997

Anon. ‘National Gallery celebrates centennial of Dutch lithographer M.C. Escher’. Aiken Standard. November 23 1997

(Text only)

 

Knight Ridder. ‘Playful prints. National Gallery showcases the familiar images of M. C. Escher’. Sunday Arts, December 28, 1997 page 3C

(Drawing Hands, Snakes, Hand with Reflecting Sphere, detail from Metamorphosis II)

 

1998

 

Roberta Smith. ‘ART REVIEW; Just a Nonartist in the Art World, but Endlessly Seen and Cited’. The New York Times January 21, 1998

I can’t quote make out Smith’s viewpoint here. I’m not sure if she is critiquing Escher or is commenting as a dispassionate observer as to his place in art history. Certainly, Doris Schattsneider in Visions takes a dim view of her comments here.

 

Gary Schwan. ‘Prints of the puzzle-meister coming to Norton’. The Palm Beach Post. March 20 1998, p. 35

(Waterfall)

 

Pam Harbaugh. ‘Seeing isn’t believing’. Florida Today. Sunday April 26 1998

(Sky and Water II, Waterfall, Cycle)

M. C. Escher: A Private World celebrates the centennial of the Dutch artist’s birth.

 

2000

Michael Pollak. ‘A Webhead ahead of his time’. Santa Cruz Sentinel Personal Tech. Monday October 2 2000

(Bond of Union, Another World)

 

Michael Pollak. ‘Screen Grab; An Artist the Web Was Made For’. The New York Times September 28, 2000

Escher promoting sites on the Internet.

 

2001

Esther Talbot Fenning. ‘New class will discuss wide variety of artists’. St. Louis Post-Dispatch Thursday January 11 2011

Brief mention of Escher.

 

2003

Toby Sterling. ‘Thirty years after his death, M. C Escher gets museum of his own’. Kentucky Advocate Sunday October 26 2003, p. E7

(Day and Night)

 

2010

Slyviane Gold. ‘Escher's Journeys to and from Reality’. The New York Times September 24 2010

 

2011

Dorothy Shinn, art critic. Art Review. ‘Escher ahead of his time’. Akron Beach Journal. Sunday February 13 2011, pp. E1, E8

(Relativity, Bond of Union, Mobius Strip II, Depth, Reptiles)

On an exhibit at Akron art museum

 

Anon. Flier. ‘M. C. Escher Impossible Realities’. The Akron Beach Journal February 10 2011

Opening Part

(Drawing Hands)

 

Dorothy Shinn, art critic. ‘Monet exhibit gets extension’. The Akron Beach Journal. Tuesday February 22 2011

Mention of Escher.

 

Anon. Art. The Akron Beach Journal. Thursday March 3 2011

(Bond of Union, Relativity)


Date not known

Jack Carr. ‘Escher an Artist Ahead of His Time’. Star-New Art Scene.

(Day and Night)

On the California museum exhibit.

 

Anon. ‘Taste of Art Night Escher Exhibit in B’town’. Fling Entertainment Guide (10 March 2015)

(Hand with Reflecting Globe)

 

Anon. ‘Escher ignores convention’. Unknown. (20 September 2015)

(Sky and Water I)

 

Anon. Whirlpools (10 March 2015)

 

Escher Reception (10 March 2015)


Created 28 February 2017


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