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Wilhelm Wachtel 1875-1942
Wachtel was a painter, printmaker, and illustrator who studied at the Academies of Krakow and Munich. While he produced landscapes and portraits in a post-impressionistic style, much of his work was symbolic, incorporating scenes from Jewish life. He was exhibiting paintings and illustrating postcards from at least 1899 onwards. He lived and worked in both Vienna and Paris but his interests in the Zionist Pioneering movement led him to Palestine in 1936. By 1942 he had moved to the United States.
Louis Wain 1860-1939
After his studies at the West London School of Art, Wain began his career as an illustrator. His strength lay in country scenes and animals, which he depicted for magazines including the Illustrated London News. He married in 1883 and moved to Hampsted but his wife soon contracted cancer and died within three years. During this period he would dress up their cat to amuse her and this eventually provided inspiration for his best known work. He designed over 600 postcards featuring anthropomorphic cats for at least 80 different publishers, and cutout cat dolls for Raphael Tuck. He is also known to have illustrated books under the pseudonym George Henri Thompson. In 1907 he moved to New York where he illustrated two comic strips, Cats About Town and Grimalkin. Wain however was a poor businessman and he returned to England broke. He seems to have exhibited strange behavior all of his life, and this steadily progressed until he was committed to a mental hospital in 1924 after being diagnosed with schizophrenia. Today there are those who disagree with this diagnosis believing he may have suffered from a spectrum disorder.
R.J. Walsh 1893-1991
Walsh, who went by the name Stick Walsh was a graphic artist that produced cartoons and fashion and risqué postcards.
Jean Jacques Waltz 1871-1951
Waltz studied at the Imperial College in Colmar, and then at the Academy in Lyon. Though trained as a landscape artist, he found work drawing designs for textile manufactures. He also began making satirical illustrations for magazines such as L’Illustration under the pseudonym Hansi, the name by which he is best known. Bitter over the German control of the province Alsace, seized during the Franco-Prussian War, he did much to popularize French nationalism while criticizing the Germans who he saw as occupiers. His best known book, Moi Village published in 1913 featured an Alsatian town under harsh German rule. After satirizing the German police in 1914 he was sentenced to prison. This set off a wave of protests and the police in turn provided him with an easy escape just before the outbreak of war to end the controversy. Though he served as a translator in the French Army during World War One, he continued to draw anti-German propaganda. Alsace was returned to France once the war ended but it was reoccupied by the Germans once World War Two broke out. Fearful of retaliation, Waltz fled to Agen under the Vichy regime in 1940, but a year later the Gestapo caught up with him and nearly beat him to death. He unexpectedly recovered and fled to Switzerland. He would return to Colmar in 1946.
Alice Wanke 1873-1936
After studying at the Kustgewerbeschule in Vienna, Wanke primarily became a graphic artist who illustrated magazines and postcards. Even though she largely worked in an Art Nouveau style, the graphics on her cards can be highly decorative in different ways.
Andy Warhol 1928-1987
After studying art at the Carnegie Institute of Technology, Warhol (originally Warhola) moved to New York City in 1949. There he found work as a very successful illustrator for Harpers Bazaar and Vogue. He also worked in advertising and designed album covers. He began exhibiting his paintings in 1952 but it was not until 1961 that they took on the form of Pop Art where the distinctions between fine and commercial art were blurred. He soon set up The Factory, a concept more than a place, to mass produce his work in collaboration with others of like mind. In this free flowing creative environment painting was put aside in favor of more conceptual work in photography, film, and music. Silkscreen became the mainstay of his output, a medium for which Warhol is now best recognized through. In 1968 Warhol was shot by Valerie Solanas, a disgruntled member of The Factory, and he never fully recovered from his wounds. Afterwards The Factory became a more tightly controlled environment centered on production. Art became product or as Warhol put it, “Good business is the best art.” Warhol who had turned celebrity itself into an artform co-founded the gossip magazine Interview in 1973. His own reluctance to be forthcoming with the press however has left him an enigmatic and controversial figure. While Warhol did not design postcards many gallery cards were issued for his exhibitions. While these are not artist signed cards many of these were artist autographed cards in keeping with notions of Pop Art and celebrity, and they remain difficult to categorize. Countless postcards depicting film stills to silkscreens continue to be issued as reproductions.
Ida Waugh ?-1919
Ida came from a very artistic family. Her father Samuel Bell Waugh was a portrait painter of note, her mother Mary painted miniatures, and her half brother Frederic Judd became a well known marine painter. In addition to the tutoring she received at home she studied at the Pennsylvania Academy of Art and went on to Paris to attend the Julian Academy. Ida settled down on Baileys Island in Maine’s Casco Bay next door to the children’s book writer Amy Ella Blanchard. Not only did Ida illustrate her books but many of the images she drew of infants for When Mother Was a Little Girl were placed on chromolithographic postcards in the late 1890’s.
Mili Weber 1891-1978
Weber was a popular painter and illustrator. She produced many fantasy and fairy tale images in watercolor for postcards.
Walter Wellman 1879-1949
After studying architecture at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1902, Wellman was commissioned by the Boston Globe to provide them with comic drawings. By 1906 he began self publishing many of his quirky cartoons as postcards. In 1907 his first comic strip IF, featuring a boy named Willie appeared in the Boston Herald. Soon after he left to work in New York City, acquiring a nearby home in Montvale, New Jersey. There he produced a number of strips and glamour illustrations for newspapers and magazines including McClures, Harpers Bazaar, Life, Judge, Puck, and Woman’s Home Companion. His postcard production seems to have stopped after being drafted in 1918, but he was self publishing comic cards again in the 1940’s.
Albert Welti 1862-1912
Between 1881 and 1885 Welti attended the Munich Academy followed by studies in Venice. Afterwards he set up a studio in Zurich where he produced paintings, pastels, and etchings. In 1885 he moved to Munich to take part in the richer art scene there, but he returned to Zurich in 1908. Though his symbolist work was heavily influenced by Arnold Blocklin, Welti personalized some of it to include much more of the grotesque. A whole series of these symbolist images in different media were placed on postcards. His son, Albert Jacob Welti became a painter and writer.
Martta Wendelin 1893-1996
Wendelin studied with Akseli Gallen-Kallela at the University of Helsinki, and became a painter of rural Finnish landscapes and types. Much of her work has strong moral overtones. She was also a very popular and influential illustrator of posters, books, and magazines such as Aitta Ketilesi. She also designed about 1,000 postcards and Christmas cards with Finnish themes.
Brynoff Wennerberg 1866-1950
Though Brynoff’s father was an artist himself, he did not want his son to follow in his footsteps. In 1885 Brynoff moved to Stockholm anyway to attend the School of Applied Arts. This was followed by studies at Kroyer’s School in Coppenhagen, and eventually attendance at the Academies in Munich and Paris. It was Munich he would settle in and become a German citizen in 1912. His early work in painting and graphics was heavily influenced by Jugendstil, and often bordered on the risqué; but as time went on his work grew tamer. Wennerberg contributed many illustrations to the magazines Lustige Blatter, Meggendorfer Blatter, and Simplicissimus, but he is best known for In the Homeland, a set of propaganda images issued as a portfolio of prints and as postcards in 1915. They offered a romanticized view of how German civilians supported their fighting men. These cards were very popular and were reprinted throughout World War One, not just out of patriotism but for their attractive female figures modeled after his daughters. While his output decreased in the postwar years, the Nazis still included him in their Great German Art Exhibitions during the late 1930’s.
Albertine Randall Wheelan 1863-1954
After attending the San Francisco School of Design, Albertine began her career as a painter, costume designer, and illustrator. In 1887 she married Fairfax Henry Wheelan. In addition to providing illustrations for Harpers Bazar, St. Nicholas magazine, and the New York Herald, she illustrated children’s books such as The Fairies Trolly and Alice’s Adventures in Pictureland. Some of these images wound up on postcards but she designed holiday greetings as well. In 1915 her husband died and she moved to New York City eventually settling down in Greenwich Village. She continued her illustrative work and in 1927 she introduced her first comic strip Rabbitboro. This was followed four years latter by Dumbunnies. After retirement she moved to Connecticut. Her son, Edgar Wheelan also became a comic artist.
Dorothy Muriel Wheeler 1891-1966
Wheeler studied at the Blackheath School of Art, and in 1916 she illustrated her first of many children’s books. Many of her images were also issued as postcards in sets for a number of different publishers. She primarily worked in watercolor with strong linear graphics.
Flora White 1878-1953
White was a children’s book illustrator whose imagery was also used on postcards.
Manuel Wielandt 1863-1922
Wielandt studied at the Academies in Stuttgart and Karlsruhe. In 1903 he moved to Munich and began painting and etching landscapes in a neo-impressionist style. His work was often included in the Munich Secession. He traveled a great deal making many trips to Italy but also to Malta and the French Riviera. From this he produced many watercolors that were used to illustrate chromolithographic postcards published by Velten. They were issued in four sets of 25 cards each. They cover the Liquiria region of Italy, the Italian lake district, the Veneto region of Italy, and the French Riviera, Provence and Monoco. Much of there design is a tribute to the printer Ernest Nister. These cards were very popular and saw many re-printings. Wieland also produced a similarly styled set of cards of German cities along with hand colored view-cards and children’s illustrations.
Jupp Wiertz 1888-1939
Wiertz attended the Aachen School of Applied Art followed by studies at the Berlin School of Applied Art where he learned lithography. He became heavily involved in commercial advertising as World War One broke out, then halfway through the conflict turned his attention to create propaganda posters. In 1919 Wiertz became a cofounder of the Association of German Graphic Designers. He spent most of the 1920’s creating illustrations for magazines. By the 1930’s more of his work revolved around travel advertising for which he designed posters and postcards. In 1935 he began designing cards for the petroleum industry. After the nazis took power in Germany he followed the trend to included more Nationalist content in his work. In 1938 an infection he acquired became septic and he died after a long illness.
Vally Wieselthler 1895-1945
While Wieselthler studied textile design, painting, and architecture at the Vienna School of Allied Arts, she concentrated on ceramic work after leaving this institution. She became a member of the Wiener Werkstätte in 1917 at the invitation of her former teacher, Joseph Hoffmann. Not only did she produce playful expressive figurines with bold color glazing, she designed postcards there as well. Between 1922 and 1927 she ran her own shop, and then began traveling back and forth to New York City until finally settling there in 1932. While she was able to sell her work through department stores, it grew much more subdued in style and coloration after her last move.
Oscar Wilson 1867-1930
Wilson was a painter who worked in oils and watercolor in a somewhat academic style that grew more expressive over the years. Some of his images were used on glamour postcards.
Leonard Winterowski 1886-1927
Winterowski was a painter and graphic artist. Much of his subject matter revolved around Jewish themes but he also depicted military subjects during the First World War and the Russian Civil War. Some of his more generalized graphic work was used in postcard production.
Joseph Rudolf Witzel 1867-1924
Witzel studied at the Stadelsches Institute in Frankfurt, then in Karlsruhe. He moved to Munich in 1890 to work as a painter and graphic artist producing posters and advertising. In 1896 he started to provide Jugend magazine with the first of many illustrations. Two years later he also began designing a number of postcards for them in a strong Art Nouveau style that often contains erotic overtones.