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Collection of 548 postcard prints and original photographs depicting airships, dirigibles and zeppelins, ca. 1890 to 1960. Most images 3 x 5 in. or 4 x 6 in., housed in period 4to and tall 4to boards albums, one with spine partially detached.  N.p (United Kingdom?), N.d. (ca. 1890 to 1960).  (47267)

The golden age of the passenger airship came to an abrupt halt on May 6, 1937 when the Hindenburg scorched the night sky over Lakehurst, New Jersey.  Stunned by newsreel footage of the disaster, the public understandably lost faith in the zeppelin as a secure mode of transport.  Needless to say (despite occasional rumors of its resuscitation) the dirigible industry has yet to  fully recover.  But for the first three decades of the 20th century, an extraordinary variety of lighter-than-air craft shared the airways with early airplanes and gliders. F.A. Bernett Books has recently acquired two albums of photographs and postcards that illustrate the history of these curious aerostatic vehicles, both before and after the Hindenburg.

And if the clues we’ve discovered between their covers point in the right direction, it seems the collection may once have belonged to one of the airship’s most passionate advocates. But more on that later.

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Artists’ postcards from the collection of Ulises Carrión, comprised of approximately 900 individual items in 108 small edition sets (most 50-500 copies) by Günter Brus, Stempelplaats, Nickolaus Urban, and Gabor Toth, among others, many signed by the artists and addressed to Carrión.  [44030]

Brus, Gunter "O Wunder, Wunderschone Sonne," suite of four postcard prints, N.p., 1978.  Signed and dated by Brus, with dedidication to Carion on verso of first card.

Brus, Gunter "O Wunder, Wunderschone Sonne," suite of four postcard prints, N.p., 1978. Signed and dated by Brus with dedication to Carrión on verso of first card.

Without so much as an envelope to keep their contents private, postcards may be our most casual yet intimate mode of personal correspondence. We send them to our friends and colleagues to boast of our visits to exotic locales, natural wonders and art museums.  The gesture implies fondness and familiarity with the addressee—“wish you were here,” etc.  And though they sometimes depict works of art, we seldom think of them as substantial works of art unto themselves.

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