Saturday, April 6, 2013
The Fine Art of NISTER Published Postcards
This post is devoted to Nister turn-of-the-century postcards. Ernest Nister was born in Germany in 1842 and became a publisher known for top quality color printing and moveable books. In the late 1800s, he had design studios in both London and Germany but all printing was done in Germany. Collectors of antique postcards know that the chromolithographic printing in Germany was fine quality, and "Made in Germany" on the back of old postcards is still of interest to postcard buyers.
I particularly enjoy the Valentines from Nister that include a busy little Cupid in a variety of settings. The Valentine postcard that opens this post is an example. Flat, like all the Nister postcards I have collected, the bright artwork and unusual themes (and puns) are especially appealing. Here are two more -
Nister Easter postcards include some vivid designs on plain backgrounds like these two dramatic images of realistic chicks and a brown rabbit inside big colored eggs.
Nister published books, calendars, greeting cards and poetry in addition to postcards. With over 500 children's books appearing under the Nister name, some of the nicest Nister postcard images were originally used to illustrate these storybooks. Since the artist's name was frequently missing, we are left attempting to identify the creators of many beautiful unsigned images.
Above is a detail of a lovely little girl who appears in more than one Nister postcard. Below are pretty Nister children on Christmas designs.
This little girl in a striped outfit is from a series entitled Little Wanderers and the cards are signed at the bottom, L.J. Kipper.
Nister ceased publication in 1916. Although not the most prolific publisher of postcards, the fine art on Nister designs make them well worth considering.
PRICE ESTIMATES: Nister postcards vary widely in popularity and price. The Little Wanderers series is, in my opinion, under-appreciated and can be had at bargain prices.
Some particularly fine images, such as the little blonde girl shown in this post, can cost much more. The Easter and Valentine designs fall in-between and cost anywhere from about $8 - $15, depending on where you find them. These estimates are for postcards in EXCELLENT condition, and they are only estimates.