Secretarybird – 1969 Woodblock by Fritz Urban Welti

Charming small format woodblock illustration of a Secretarybird (Sagittarius serpentarius), the unique large African bird which kills its prey (lizards and snakes) by kicking or stomping with its long legs.  The bird is an emblem of South Africa and of Sudan.

Dimensions: Sheet approx 14.5 x 19.5 cm (full sheet) – actual size is smaller than shown below.
Woodblock / Woodcut print on very fine Japan Paper

This woodcut is one of a series commissioned by the Welti family transport business, Welti-Furrer, of which Fritz Urban’s grandfather was a founder.

From a limited edition of 20 designed as birthday cards for fortunate clients of the Welti-Furrer company.  We have several sheets from this edition and the number within the edition may be different from the number shown.

Fritz Urban Welti
Zurich 1901 - Zollikon 1974

Fritz Urban Welti was a painter and a master of the woodcut print. He was born in Zurich in 1901 and died in Zollikon near Zurich in 1974. He studied in Cologne, Vienna and Paris and was well known for his book illustrations. He was the nephew of the famous Swiss symbolist artist Albert Welti.

The Woodcuts on this page were executed as commissions for the Welti family transport business, Welti-Furrer, of which Fritz Urban's grandfather was a founder.

There is a very old tradition in Switzerland that companies and societies give a print ((Neujahrsblatt) to their clients and associates at New Years. Welti created these "New Years Print " engravings for the company beginning in the early 1930s. In some years a second card was also created that could be used as a birthday card for clients.

We are pleased to be able to offer signed limited editions, handprinted by the artist, of some of the woodblock prints below.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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