Fashion Sense and Beardsley Prints

Noted collector Mark Samuels Lasner closed the RBC’s fall season of events with a wonderfully informative and well-presented lecture on “Aubrey Beardsley and His Publishers.” Thursday evening November 10th, some seventy-five people listened to Samuels Lasner explain how three London publishers – J. M. Dent, John Lane, and Leonard Smithers – shaped Beardsley’s artwork.

Samuels Lasner successfully conveyed the complex relationship between creativity and commerce, referring throughout to Chapel Hill’s strong Beardsley holdings, including genuine annotated proofs for Leonard Smithers’ periodical The Savoy (one is shown to the left). (We learned from Samuels Lasner’s lecture that prints called “proofs” are actually often later reproductions of Beardsley’s work!)

Beardsley material from RBC was on display for the evening, and people saw the items with new eyes after MSL’s enlightening talk. To quote Rod Stewart: “ageless, timeless, lace and fineness . . . beauty and elegance.”