An original aquatint and etching, titled "· Kamani · Hawaii" and signed by the artist in lower margin with embossed seal. "No. 8" also written at the very bottom right edge of the paper. This is an excellent example of the technical height to which Kelly attained in the medium of aquatint. The tonal variation and definition that he's created in this image is beautiful and very advanced. The young Hawaiian girl stands with her feet in the sand, wearing a skirt with a flower in her hair and a large Kamani tree branch hanging behind her.
John Kelly's aquatints were hand-printed by the artist and each print is unique by the nature of this printing process. Since the ink/color was painted onto the printing plate for each print, one often sees great variation in each print even if the image is the same. As described in the book, John Melville Kelly: Hawaiian Idyll, "His experimental approach to inking plates made possible broad ranges of tone and unique color combinations from one print to the next. Thus, no two of his prints were ever identical." Although there are no records of how many prints of each image were made, experts agree that his editions were well under 100 for even the most popular images and only a handful were printed of some of the rarer images.
Age: circa 1940s
Size: paper 14" x 10-1/2"; image 12" x 7-5/8"; framed 21-1/4" x 16"
Media: Aquatint and etching.
This work of art is currently framed