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Kay Nielsen
Født Kay Rasmus Nielsen
12. marts 1886
København, Danmark
Død 21. juni 1957 (71 år)
Los Angeles, Californien
Nationalitet Dansk
Uddannelse og virke
Felt Illustrator og Tegner
Periode Art Nouveau (Jugendstil)
Kendte værker Østen for solen og vesten for Månen
Inspireret af Asiatisk kunst, Persisk kunst, Aubrey Beardsley

Kay Rasmus Nielsen (12. marts 188621. juni 1957) var en dansk tegner og illustrator. Han var populær i perioden der betragtes som "guldalderen" indenfor anglo-amerikansk bogillustration i den første del af 1900-tallet. Ligesom Arthur Rackham og Edmund Dulac var han kendt for sine illustrationer af gavebøger i den tidlige 20. århundrede. Nielsen er kendt for sin kollaboration med Disney for whom he contributed many story sketches and illustrations.

Biografi[redigér | redigér wikikode]

Tidlig liv[redigér | redigér wikikode]

Kay Nielsen var født i København i en kunstnerisk familie: begge hans forældre var skuespillere. Hans far, Martinus Nielsen, var direktør af Dagmarteatret, og hans mor, Oda Nielsen, var een af de mest celebre skuespillerinder af sin tid, både på Det Kongelige Teater og Dagmarteatret.[1] Kay Nielsen studerede kunst i Paris på Académie Julian og Académie Colarossi fra 1904 til 1911.[2] Han boede i England fra 1911 til 1916. Hans første engelsk opgave kom fra forlaget Hodder and Stoughton for at illustrere en samling eventyrer, som bestod af 24 farveillustrationer og mere end 15 monotone illustrationer for In Powder and Crinoline, Fairy Tales Retold by Sir Arthur Quiller-Couch i 1913. Samme år fik han en kommission fra The Illustrated London News for at producere en samling af fire illustrationer for historier af Charles Perrault; Nielsens illustrationer for 'Sleeping Beauty', 'Puss in Boots', 'Cinderella' og 'Bluebeard' var publiceret i juleudgaven for 1913.

Kunstnerisk karriere[redigér | redigér wikikode]

I 1914, Nielsen lavede 25 farveplancher og mere end 21 monotone billeder for en børnebogs samling der hed East of the Sun and West of the Moon. De farveillustrationer for både In Powder and Crinoline og East of the Sun and West of the Moon var reproduceret med en 4-farve proces, som var i kontrast til mange af de illustrationer lavede af hans samtidige som normalt brugte en traditionelt 3-farve proces. Samme år lavede han mindst tre illustrationer af Jeanne d'Arcs liv. De var publiceret senere i 1920'erne og var associeret med relevante tekst fra The Monk of Fife.

While painting landscapes in the Dover area, Nielsen came into contact with The Society of Tempera Painters where he learned new skills, and was able to reduce the time involved in the painting process. In 1917 Nielsen left for New York where an exhibition of his work was held and subsequently returned to Denmark. Together with a collaborator, Johannes Poulsen, he painted stage scenery for the Royal Danish Theatre in Copenhagen. During this time, Nielsen also worked on an extensive suite of illustrations intended to accompany a translation of Scheherazade's Arabian Nights that had been undertaken by the Arabic scholar, Professor Arthur Christensen. According to Nielsen's own published comments, these illustrations were to be the basis of his return to book illustrations following a hiatus during World War I and the intention had been to publish the Danish version in parallel with versions for the English-speaking world and the French market. The project never came to fruition and Nielsen's illustrations remained unknown until many years after his death.

Following his theatrical work in Copenhagen, Nielsen returned to contributing to illustrated books with the publication of Fairy Tales by Hans Andersen in 1924. That title included 12 colour plates and more than 40 monotone illustrations. The colour images were prepared with integrated formal and informal borders; the informal borders were produced in a mille fleur style. A year later, Nielsen provided the artwork for Hansel and Gretel, and Other Stories by the Brothers Grimm which was first published with 12 colour images and over 20 detailed monotone illustrations. A further 5 years passed before the publication of Red Magic, the final title to be illustrated comprehensively by Nielsen. The 1930 version of Red Magic included 8 colour and more than 50 monotone contributions from the Danish artist.

Arbejd hos Disney[redigér | redigér wikikode]

In 1939 Nielsen left for California and worked for Hollywood companies. A personal recommendation from Joe Grant to Walt Disney secured Nielsen a job with The Walt Disney Company,[3] where his work was used in the "Ave Maria" and "Night on the Bare Mountain" sequences of Fantasia.[4] Nielsen was renowned at the Disney studio for his concept art and he contributed artwork for many Disney films, including concept paintings for a proposed adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen's The Little Mermaid. The adaptation was to be part of a package film containing various segments based on Andersen's fairy tales. The film, however, was not made within Nielsen's lifetime and his work went unused until production started on the 1989 film.[1][5] Nielsen worked for The Walt Disney Company for 4 years, from 1937 to 1941 before being let go.[2]

Hans sidste år og død[redigér | redigér wikikode]

Nielsen briefly returned to Denmark in desperation. However, he found his works no longer in demand there either.[6] His final years were spent in poverty. His last works were for local schools, including 'The First Spring' mural installed at Central Junior High School, Los Angeles and churches, including his painting to the Wong Chapel at the First Congregational Church, Los Angeles, illustrating the 23rd Psalm.

Nielsen contracted a chronic cough that would plague him until his death on June 21, 1957 at the age of 71. His funeral service was held under his mural in the Wong Chapel. Ulla, his wife since she was 21, died the following year.[7]

Before her death to diabetes, Ulla gave Nielson's remaining illustrations to Frederick Monhoff, who in turn tried to place them in museums. However, none – American or Danish – would accept them at the time.[6] Some of his works are now in the collection of the University of Pittsburgh's Information Sciences Library.[7]

References[redigér | redigér wikikode]

Skabelon:Refimprove

  1. ^ a b Allan, Robin (1999). Walt Disney and Europe (1st udgave). John Libbey and Company, Ltd. s. 162. ISBN 978-0-253-21353-2. 
  2. ^ a b Haase, Donald, (red.) (2008). The Greenwood Encyclopedia of Fairy Tales & Folk Tales. 2 (1st udgave). Greenwood Press. s. 678. ISBN 978-0-313-33443-6. 
  3. ^ Allan, p. 30
  4. ^ Johnston, Ollie; Thomas, Frank (1981). The Illusion of Life: Disney Animation (1st udgave). Walt Disney Productions. s. 139. ISBN 0-7868-6070-7. 
  5. ^ (2006) Audio Commentary by John Musker, Ron Clements, and Alan Menken Bonus material from The Little Mermaid: Platinum Edition [DVD]. Walt Disney Home Entertainment.
  6. ^ a b David Larkin, (red.) (1977). The unknown paintings of Kay Nielsen. Peacock Press/Bantam Book. Hentet 17 January 2012. 
  7. ^ a b U. of Pittsburgh, The Illustrators Project

External links[redigér | redigér wikikode]