Anonymous, ‘Joan’s plate,’ 1942. Etching and engraving, plate: 4 13/16 x 3 1/8 in. (12.3 x 7.9 cm), sheet: 11 3/16 x 8 ¾ in. (28.4 x 22.3 cm). Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Gift of Elizabeth McFadden, 1983.1156.9.

46. Joan

Life Datesunknown
Place of Birthunknown
Place of Deathunknown
Birth Nameunknown

Included in a donation of prints from Anne Ryan’s estate to the Metropolitan Museum of Art is a beautiful still life engraving of a magnolia flower in a glass pitcher by an anonymous female artist. An inscription in Ryan’s handwriting simply identifies the print as “Joan’s Plate 1942.” Although it is impossible to positively identify who “Joan” is without further information, it is almost certain she studied engraving at Atelier 17 when it was located at the New School. All of the other prints included in the same donation to the Metropolitan Museum (accession nos. 1983.1156.1-.14) are by Atelier 17 members. Furthermore, it would be highly unusual that an artist working in New York during the early 1940s would have practiced engraving so masterfully without formal instruction.