The Underwood American Girl Calendar – The Girl of the West
This large Clarence Underwood gouache painting appeared as the first page in the 1908 Underwood American Girl Calendar with the title “The Girl Of The West“. The calendar was published by The Frederick A. Stokes Company. The image features a handsome young enlisted soldier in military dress and a tiny waisted corseted Edwardian belle with a plumed hat and parasol. Painting comes with two versions of printed calendar pages and is handsomely framed and matted under glass. Clarence Underwood was a prolific very successful pretty girl artist whose art graced many a Saturday Evening Post and Ladies’ World magazines. The Underwood Girl was a wildly popular depiction at the turn of the last century.
This illustration comes from the collection of esteemed illustration art collector Norman Platnick.
The Legacy of Norman Platnick
In his New York Times obituary, Norman Platnick’s son Will said that his father had three passions in life, his wife Nancy, spiders, and collecting.
Few individuals have the chance to leave a mark like Norm’s in even one field, let alone two. But Norm managed to be both a celebrated scientist, and one of the most influential lay historians of illustration art.
Under his imprint Enchantment Ink, Norm researched, wrote, and published collectors guides to artists like Rolf Armstrong and Earl Christy. We at Grapefruit Moon Gallery rely on these books in our work, and they are now all freely available as PDFs through the Enchantment Ink website.
Norm’s expertise was a gift, his friendship was a treasure, and his legacy is immeasurable. He is missed.