Anatomy of Magic


Anatomy of Magic


Philip Kaplan
American, b. Russia, 1903–1990




Born in Grodno, Russia, Philip Kaplan moved to the United States with his parents and siblings in 1911. The family settled in Cleveland, where eventually Kaplan, largely self-taught as an artist, flourished as a commercial painter. His introduction to modernism came from his association with the infamous Kokoon Arts Club, an organization dedicated to supporting the avant-garde, which he joined in 1925 and then served in a number of administrative positions, including president in 1932.

In 1939, Kaplan moved to New York City, where for twenty-five years he worked as an art director for a printing firm. Sometime in the later 1940s, he kept his hand in the fine art world by joining Atelier 17. The series of intaglios he produced there mark the full extent of his known oeuvre.


Palmer Museum of Art, The Pennsylvania State University, Gift of Margaret Chew Dolan and Peter Maxwell




This image is posted publicly for non-profit educational uses, excluding printed publication. Other uses are not permitted.


Engraving, soft-ground etching, aquatint, and gauffrage with stencil; Plate: 14-7/8 x 10-5/8 in. (37.7 x 26.9 cm), sheet: 19-15/16 x 13-1/16 in. (50.7 x 33.2 cm)