We are always buying postcards and photos from before 1950 - email us at circa1910@tampabay.rr.com.




Saturday, March 27, 2010

Marie Flatscher's Beautiful Children on Postcards

Marie Flatscher is one of my favorite artists - her work is found on PFB published postcards and on Meissner Buch published postcards, plus on some cards where the publisher is not given.  She has a witty, humorous way of portraying children both in natural child settings, and doing adult things as in her children-driving-thru-the-countryside designs like the one above.   Her colors are bright and her draftmanship sure and confident.  Once in a while sellers list cards with awkward children on them as Marie Flatscher designs, but once you have developed an eye for Flatscher's work, you won't be misled.   A small number of her designs are signed with her initials M.F., but most of our collection consists of unsigned images.

Some tell-tale signs of a Marie Flatscher design include the old-fashioned baby's bottle, and some soggy socks drooping around the toddlers' ankles.   Along with the socks, shoes are often missing or simply slippers.  Her children's faces are unmistakable, though, with their sweet winning smiles and bright eyes.  Here's an Easter design that shows the Flatscher footwear and the wonderful facial expression.  A great big chick joins in the Easter celebration and the background is pastel flowers - pale pink/violet.  Most of Flatscher's designs are embossed and all the ones in this post fall into that category.  Some of the Meissner Buch published designs are flat - and some of them are quite elegant fantasy images with children in flowering trees, in starry skies and other magical settings. The PFB designs are easier to find in the U.S. and the M&B designs seem more numerous in Europe.
Below is another countryside design where the children are shown in motorized freedom - there's a design where they have chased a goose off the road while they zoom along in their auto, for instance.  Here they are having a picnic, with wine for big brother (he isn't THAT big!) and a milk bottle for baby sister.  Flatscher often shows her children with dogs or cats, and she is just as masterful at portraying pets.
PFB published a childhood set of Marie Flatscher designs that shows children at home playing with siblings and animals, surrounded by toys.  Above is one of the childhood designs where baby and brother are on a red rocking horse.  The poetry can be touching or surprising, as each extolls the joys of childhood...sometimes by comparing the carefree younger years to the stresses and woes of adulthood.  The poem on this card says, With whip and spur they merrily course, They've ridden far today. What though their steed's a wooden horse, What hunter's life's so gay!


Here is another childhood design, this time with baby and big sister, an old-fashioned jester doll at the foot of the red cradle.  This time the poetry reads: Sunny little faces always gay, Little airs and graces all the day.  How their little dimples charm away our care, Make our mighty troubles vanish into air.

There is a wide variety of Marie Flatscher series in holiday designs.  Several of the finest celebrate Christmas and New Year's - including a Christmas set of children in holly trees, blowing horns and sometimes drinking baby bottles of milk.  Here is an example of a Christmas series of children sledding, and an example from a wonderful New Year set where the main image is of a giant clock, with Flatscher's adorable children on top of or in front of the midnight timepiece.  The babies shown here share a hug, each holding a celebratory milk bottle, with the signature missing shoes and droopy socks. 


Here we see a cat accompanying a little girl who brings flowers as a Birthday greeting.  Again, the card is embossed and the little girl has her own individual character - Flatscher didn't draw the same child again and again (unless it was within the same series where the same children appeared in different settings) but gave each child a personality.  This little girl is a bit shy, as you can see.  At least she remembered both her pink shoes!  On the right is an unusual card with metallic highlights in the girl's clothing - copper and green added to a lively design of a child feeding her two little puppies.  The poetry encourages the dogs to share.

Price Estimates:  This post has focused on embossed Marie Flatscher designs commonly available in the U.S.  Prices for these cards have risen sharply in the past five years, and they now command between $10 and $18 with some higher.  The metallics postcard is more unusual and will cost more.  Most of the cards shown here were published by PFB, with some having no publisher designated.  The European Flatscher designs, mostly published by Meissner & Buch, are harder to find in the U.S.  They have recently ended between $14 - $60 at auction on eBay, most often listed by European sellers.  Because Flatscher has only come to prominence in the past few years, you may still be able to find good buys on Flatscher cards at postcard shows by looking at the dealer's stock of PFB or CHILDREN postcards.  These prices are for postcards in EXCELLENT condition and they are only estimates of current prices. 

  

3 comments:

  1. In the design of Flatscher most relief, and all this kind of fall in this position...



    Elaine from 1st babies

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  2. Hello there,
    Thank you for all of the information on Marie Flatscher - it is most interesting. I wonder can you help me, I have a framed Marie Flatscher print that is approximately 14.5 inches by 5.5 inches in size and have, at one time, seen a postcard using part of this print but apart from my owm print I have never come across anything other than postcards and I wondered if you were aware of any Marie Flatscher prints? I would be happy to email a photo to you of my print if you are interested to see it.
    Kind regards,
    Christine.

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  3. We would be delighted to see your print...sorry to say we do not have any additional information on Marie Flatscher - we haven't been able to find any history on her life, her other works, etc.

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