• Rie Cramer: the early years

     Rie Cramer (1887-1977) was a Dutch writer and illustrator of children's literature. A prolific artist, she produced illustrations for hundreds of books, many of them her own. Her early work was influenced by Aubrey Beardsley, Arthur Rackham and Edmund Dulac and had a distinct Art Nouveau style. Although primarily dedicated to children's books, Cramer also illustrated adult literature, from Shakespeare and Grimm to Sanskrit tales and the Arabian nights.

    In 1910-1911 she wrote and illustrated four picture books, each for every season of the year: lente, zomer, herfst and winter.

    lente, zomer, herfst en winter

    In 1911 she illustrated Geertruida Vogel's Spring flowers published in London by A & C Black. They were published in the Netherlands as Lentebloemen in 1914.

    rie cramer spring flowers

    rie cramer spring flowers

    rie cramer spring flowers

    rie cramer spring flowers

    rie cramer spring flowers

    rie cramer spring flowers

    rie cramer spring flowers

    rie cramer spring flowers

    rie cramer spring flowers

    rie cramer spring flowers

    In 1915 Cramer illustrated the tales of Hans Christian Andersen (Sprookjes van Hans Andersen). She would later produce a new set of illustrations for the 1932  edition De Sprookles van Andersen. Andersen, who wrote and published his famous stories in Copenhagen between 1935 and 1945, has left an everlasting mark in world literature through classics such as "The Emperor's New Clothes", "The Little Mermaid", "The Snow Queen", "The Ugly Duckling", "Thumbelina" and many more.

    Rie Cramer - Sprookjes van Andersen (1915)

    Rie Cramer - Sprookjes van Andersen (1915)

    Sprookjes van Andersen (1915)

    In 1916 she illustrated another classic, the stories of Mother Goose (De sprookjes van Moeder de Gans). The tales of Mother Goose, a collection of fairy tales and nursery rhymes told by an old country woman, first appeared in England and France in the 17th century. They were gradually modified to suit for an audience of aristocratic and noble courtiers as witnessed in Madame d'Aulnoy's contes de fées and Charles Perrault's Histoires ou contes du temps passé and Les Contes de ma Mère l'Oye.

    Rie Cramer - Moeder Hans 1

    Rie Cramer - Moeder Hans 2

    In 1917 Cramer produced illustrations for the tales of the brothers Grimm (Sprookjes van Grimm). First published in Germany in December of 1812 as Kinder- und Hausmärchen (Childrens and Houshold Tales), these tales had an immense influence in the western world and were accompanied by illustrations right from the very early editions.

    Rie Cramer - Grimm's Tales 1917

    The same year she published one of her music books, Nieuwe liedjes bij prentjes (New songs with pictures), with music by Alex de Jong.

    Rie Cramer 1917 Nieuwe Lidjes en prentjes

     

    In 1918-1920 she illustrated a six part dutch edition of ''the Churning of the Ocean'' (het karnen van de oceaan des tijds), a collection of Sanskrit love stories based on ancient Hindu mythology: De Koningin van de dageraad (The Queen of Dawn), Koning Soeryakanta (King Soeryakanta), Het land van de lotus van de zon (The land of the lotus of the sun), Hoe Waterlelie zegevierde (How Water-lily triumphed), Een dronk uit het hemelsche blauw (A draught from the heavenly blue) and Een incarnarnatie van de sneeuw (An incarnation of the snow).

    Rie Cramer - het karnen van de oceaan des tijds

     Rie Cramer - het karnen van de oceaan des tijds  

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