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The Art of Mort Künstler / The American Spirit / The Civil War

Here you will find a pictorial chronicle of the drama and excitement of American History. These paintings give the viewer an insight into the tumultuous life of this young nation that mere words cannot achieve.



Road to Glory - limited edition print
Jackson Leaves VMI April 21, 1861


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Paper Artist's Proof - $425.00



 


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LIMITED EDITION PRINTS

Paper Prints
Reproduction technique: Fine offset lithography on neutral pH archival quality paper using the finest fade-resistant inks.
Each print is numbered and signed by the artist and accompanied by a Certificate of Authenticity.


Image Size: 15 1/4" x 29" • Overall Size: 20 1/2" x 33 1/2"
Signed & Numbered • Edition Size: 1500
Signed Artist's Proof • Edition Size: 100



Mort Künstler's Comments

While working on my Jackson and Lee book, I decided to portray Major Thomas J. Jackson, leading the Cadet Corps from VMI on April 21, 1861. It was a dramatic moment in the history of the Virginia Military Institute.

To research the painting, I met with Professor James Robertson, the foremost authority on Stonewall Jackson, and Colonel Keith Gibson of the VMI Museum in Lexington. Together we traced the exact actions of Jackson and the Corps of Cadets by walking the same route at the same time of day. I settled on this specific spot for a number of reasons. I wanted to depict the Main Barracks as a principal element in the painting, because of the angle and the lighting effect the sun would create at 11:30 a.m. By taking a low eye level, I was able to silhouette Jackson's head against the sky, adding clouds behind his head to create an even greater contrast for the dark of Jackson's hat and beard.

Major Raleigh Colston, a fellow VMI professor, accompanies Jackson as the color guard and Corps of Cadets march off to Richmond to help train recruits. The white VMI flag, the same as used today, leads the parade, while the Virginia State flag and the first national flag of the Confederacy fly above the Barracks building. It was a grand and exciting day for the community and the local citizens turned out in force to cheer their sons in a show of support.

In the background, the famous statue of George Washington by Houdin bears silent witness to the beginning of what would become the great and tragic drama of the American Civil War.

 

 
All illustrations by Mort Künstler. Text by Michael Aubrecht, Dee Brown, Henry Steele Commager, Rod Gragg, Mort Künstler, Edward Lengel, James McPherson, and James I. Robertson, Jr. - Copyright © 2001-2018. All Rights Reserved. No part of the contents of this web site may be reproduced or utilized in any form by any means without written consent of the artist.