Sometime in the late 1930s/early-1940s, Colorado Springs artist Archie Musick (whose amazing hand-built home in Garden of the Gods we profiled HERE) created a mind-boggling 75-page hand-made Christmas card booklet for his friend Laura Bunnell filled not just with words or images, but with painstakingly rendered, hand-pulled stone lithographs. Local art collector Blake Wilson came into possession of this booklet through renowned local abstract artist Charles Bunnell’s estate and offers us this narrated look at “The Christmas card to end all Christmas cards.”


4 Responses to Archie Musick’s “Christmas Card to End all Christmas Cards”

  1. Daisy says:

    Stone lithography is time consuming and temperamental. These are all the more impressive for that reason! The stone is typically limestone and the surface is sanded off with a spinning disk between each drawing. The drawing is made with a greasy pen or ink and then goes through a multi-day process of etching and inking before it’s ready to start printing. The printing process is time-consuming too–you must wipe the stone each time with a wet sponge (not too wet, not too dry), then roll the ink over the image and adjust the pressure to just the right setting.

    One might ask why not just draw these? There is something terribly seductive about the process of working/drawing on limestone. The surface of the stone is luscious, the resulting texture of the print is gorgeous, and the whole process is imbued with a kind of ritual you can’t find elsewhere. Most lithography is done on metal plate now–same principles but a bit easier to prepare and allows for multi-plate color work.

    I feel fortunate to have worked on stone in my time in the printshop, it’s a real treat.

    Thanks for this!

  2. KATGHLEEN says:

    Such an extrasordinary ,exqusite treasure…Thank you Blake and The Big Something for sharing this with us…. and thanks to Daisy for describing the process…wowowow….

  3. Eva says:

    wow. that is all.

  4. Judy Casey says:

    Blake – How very interesting this was — thanks for your comments … Judy Casey


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