George Elbert Burr was perhaps the best printmaker of the American West. Considering that he was working at a time where many places were still only accessible on horseback, Burr got there and created masterpieces. The amount of detail in his etchings, for instance in "Superstition Mountain - Apache Trail - Arizona," where foreground, middle, distance and sky are all presented and worked upon. No areas are left blank - that would have been the easy way. Burr gives us all the detail and maybe just a little bit more as in the cloud forms. In 1930, "The Crafton Collection" presented us with volume seven of their American Etchers series. Titled "George Elbert Burr" the volume presents a listing of 276 prints with titles, media, and dimensions attached. In the introduction written by Arthur Millier, a Los Angeles critic and fellow printmaker. Millier speaking of Burr said: "In part his originality is due to the virgin field in which he has exercised his talents, for Burr is above everything else the teacher of the Great American Desert, a magic region at once characteristic of our continent and offering no precedent of style for the artist who would interpret it in terms of etching." Millier ends his commentary with the following: "It will bear repeating that few artists are entirely their own men both in subject material and style. Among this small group of originals none has accomplished a more genuinely original body of etched work than George Elbert Burr."
Reference: Crafton Collection (compiler) 1930. "George Elbert Burr." Introduction by Arthur Millier. American Etchers Series, Volume 7. The Crafton Collection, Inc., New York.
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