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Tuesday, April 07, 2015

New Limited Edition (Set of 3) Lithographs based on Jim Henson's Original Artwork

Celebrate Jim Henson's unique sense of humour and style with this limited edition set of three original lithographs – Hilarity, Melancholy and Conceit.

The Henson Family is delighted that Jim Henson' work is being honoured with permanent exhibitions at two museums. The largest collection will be housed in an exciting new museum at The Center for Puppetry Arts in Atlanta and a second exhibit will be at the Museum of the Moving Image in New York City. Both of these major exhibits are scheduled to open this coming fall. 

To mark the occasion, the family has commissioned master printer Andrew Mockler to create original lithographs of Jim Henson's striking artwork.

These delightful and timeless pieces are available only to donors to the Center for Puppetry Arts or The Museum of the Moving Image at the $10,000 level.

Jim began his career on local Washington, DC television in 1954 and, at the same time, enrolled as a freshman at the University of Maryland. There he studied graphic art and design, enhancing his skills in painting, drawing, photography, and printing. Jim ran a silkscreen printing business out of the UMD Student Union, producing numerous posters and programs for an array of campus events, each with a unique graphic personality.

He also used the medium for personal projects, exploring the use of visual metaphor in representing human emotion. Jim was particularly successful in this effort with a series of three prints made in 1957 or 1958 entitled Hilarity, Melancholy and Conceit. Each image exhibits his sophisticated colour sense and his mastery of the way particular moods can be represented with a combination of tones.

The posture and perceived movement of the figures reflect the feeling they are meant to represent, and the underlying humour is typical of Jim’s ability to engage and entertain his audience with the shared recognition of the comedy inherent in the human condition. A limited quantity of the originals prints were produced, signed and numbered by Jim. He gave them to close family and friends, but very few survive. It is with great pleasure that the Henson Family has arranged for these limited edition, hand-made reproductions to be made available to a very select group of collectors. This private example of Jim’s artistic vision gives viewers a window into the personal expression of Jim’s creative thinking.

A Note from Andrew Mockler, Master Printer

"When Brian Henson asked me to participate in recreating Jim's prints from his early years, I was thrilled. Back in 1979, Brian had shown me one of Jim's first animations with cut paper dancing to a rhythm -heavy jazz track. I was immediately taken with the inventive humor and the color. His drawing was completely unique, at once raw and precise. As I got to know Jim later I discovered his personality reflected that humor and warmth, and a sense of passionate energy. In making Hilarity, Conceit, and Melancholy I studied the layers of color, and printed them by hand to match Jim's process. In a way, I feel like I have communicated with him through his work, gaining an insight into the creative mastery of his art."

– Andrew Mockler, Master Printer

Letter from Cheryl Henson

The Henson Family is thrilled that Jim Henson’s work is being honored with two permanent exhibitions that will both open in the coming year. The Center for Puppetry Arts in Atlanta is in the midst of a transformative expansion to house the largest collection of Jim Henson’s work in an exciting new museum building. The Museum of the Moving Image in Queens, New York is also committed to a exhibit focusing on Jim’s work in relation to the history of television and film.

To help with the necessary fundraising for these major projects, we have commissioned a limited edition of three of Jim Henson’s very special silk screens: Hilarity, Melancholy, and Conceit. Originally hand printed by Jim in 1957, these three silk screens are being recreated by master printer Andrew Mockler. Anyone who donates $10,000 or more to the Henson projects at the Center for Puppetry Arts or the Museum of the Moving Image will be eligible to receive a set of the three prints.

Each print will be numbered and embossed with the Jim Henson Archives seal. Each set of three prints will come in a portfolio with a personal letter from Brian Henson as well as documentation from our archivist Karen Falk. Only 100 sets will be made.

Jim made these images with his unique sense of whimsy, humor and style. The little hammers chipping away at the pedestals of Conceit, the Melancholy eyes, the leaping laughing figures in Hilarity are all so Jim. An original set of these prints hung in our family home for decades and later in my father’s apartment. We are thrilled to be able to share them with donors to these two museums.

If you are interested in making a donation, please contact Amy Davis at the Center for Puppetry Arts or Christina Marouda at the Museum of the Moving Image. If you make a $10,000 donation to the Center for Puppetry Arts before August 1st, you will have the option to be named as a "founding supporter" on a wall of the Center's new museum.

Thank you,
Cheryl Henson

TO DONATE, please contact:
Amy Davis 
Center for Puppetry Arts
Christina Marouda
Museum of the Moving Image

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