John Taylor Arms Jr (1887-1953) [RA 1916-1953] : Shadows in Mexico, ca.1940.


SAL record control number: 98429 ;

Record level: Item ;

Record type: Movable work ;


Work title: Shadows in Mexico [from database collection list] ;

Alternate work titles: 
2021 : Shadows in Mexico [from database collection list] ;

Work date: ca.1940 [based on tv demonstration] ;

Work creator: John Taylor Arms Jr (1887-1953) [RA 1916-1953] ;

Work medium: Ink on paper ; etching ; 
Work dimensions: 5-1/2 x 4 inches [unframed] | 12-1/2 x 11 x 5/8 inches [framed] ; 

Inscribed / signed front: 
Location: At lower left and right.
Dated?: No.
Text: ‘III’ and ‘John Taylor Arms’.


SAL category: Genre ; 
SAL sub-category: Religious ; 

Archives of American Art subjects:

Description of work:

Born in Washington, DC, John Taylor Arms studied at Princeton University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. His sureness of hand and microscopic vision assured him a place as one of the foremost architectural etchers in the world. Impressed with Gothic architecture, he etched many of the cathedrals, gables and gargoyles throughout his travels in Europe. His total output contained approximately 444 prints with hundreds and even thousands of hours spent on some plates. The exquisite line work in his etchings was enhanced by using sewing needles, thus defining the detail in the shadows and lighting projected on stone and water. His superb quality of draftsmanship caused the editor of the Print Collector’s Quarterly, Fitzroy Carrington, to state, “For Gods sake John, don’t you ever make a mistake, get drunk or something!” He was considered the leading spokesman and advocate in the promotion of American Graphic Arts. 1 A more encompassing view of this scene was etched as a demonstration for the television broadcast, “How to Make an Etching,” given at NBC Studios, Rockefeller Center, NY on July 26, 1940. Another example: Childs Gallery – $450

2007 SCNY, accession #2007.211 ; 

Exhibition history:
2011 SCNY Salmagundi Abroad May 3 – June 10, lower gallery.
1989 SCNY Curators exhibition, December.

References / citations:
– SCNY Curator’s exhibition, December, #5 [mislabeled as JT Arnes].



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Record birth date:
July 4, 2021

Last updated: July 7, 2021 at 0:42 am