Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Artist Spotlight: Elenore Abbott

“Elenore Abbott loves her fairy tales as one who never grew up, and no child who receives such a book will be disappointed. When twelve ravishing princesses go to the ball--twelve, each more beautiful than the last, will be found clothed in gowns that befit a princess of fairy land.”
--Eva Nagel Wolf

Grimm's Fairy Tales - Illustrated by Elenore Abbott
'The Twelve Dancing Princesses'

This time around, I’m spotlighting someone new--I've drooled over Kay Nielsen’s work for years, but Elenore Abbott is a recent obsession (as in about a week before I decided to write this post recent). Obviously, I haven’t discovered as many of her illustrations yet, but the ones I have seen are lovely. 

Elenore Plaisted Abbott was born in 1875 in Lincoln, Maine. She studied art in Paris (among other places), where her work was exhibited at the Academie des Beaux Arts. In 1911 she moved to Rose Valley, Pennsylvania with her husband, C. Yarnall Abbott. Elenore painted their house there Bermuda pink. She also sold several of her paintings to finance the construction of the Rose Valley swimming pool in 1928. She died in 1935. 
Eleanor Abbott
'The Wild Swans'
'The Goose Girl at the Well'
The Little Mermaid  by Elenore Abbott. This illustration came from:    Abbott, Elenore. Grimm's Fairy Tales. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1920.    This illustration was on the endpapers of the book although no tales of mermaids were included in Abbott's selection of tales.
'The Little Mermaid'

'The Two Brothers'


The last picture is actually from Treasure Island, but I couldn’t resist including it. It still has a very fairy tale look. 

So, what have you discovered this week? A new book? Some gorgeous illustrations? As always, I’d love to hear about your favorite artists. And let me know in the comments if you have any recommendations for future spotlights!


  1. Oh wow, what beautiful work! I love the lines and the colors and the details of each piece; they're all so gorgeous. :) I think my favorites are The Twelve Dancing Princesses one and also The Wild Swans, although Cinderella is lovely too. Also, a Bermuda pink house sounds so cool, haha!

  2. The Twelve Dancing Princesses is definitely my favorite. The Wild Swans is a close second, as it's the first illustration of hers I ever saw. Thanks for commenting--I'm so glad you're enjoying these spotlights!

  3. Wow, this is a really cool feature! I'm not very knowledgable in art, but I do drool over pretty/beautiful things all the time, and you have such awesome taste in art. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Aw, thank you! My parents and grandparents bought me lots of illustrated books when I was little, so whatever taste I have I blame on them:) Thanks for stopping by!

  4. Ooh, these are pretty. They remind me of the fairytale books I read as a kid.

    Last year I started an "Illustrations" board on Pinterest, and I've discovered a lot of wonderful artists just through that. Maira Kalman is one of my favorites. And oh, have you heard of Mary Blair? She did concept art for many of the older Disney movies, and it's fabulous.

    1. I LOVE Mary Blair! Especially her concept art for Peter Pan. I was actually thinking of doing a spotlight on her one of these days. I just googled Maira Kalman and her work is lovely, too. Thanks for stopping by!