By Anna Maria Gillis |
HUMANITIES, January/February 2012 | Volume 33, Number 4
+ Click on image to enlarge.
John Hampson dabbled in the natural world, which meant capturing beetles, moths, and butterflies. Instead of mounting them, Hampson created art that depicted, among other subjects, George Washington. A machinist, Hampson had the “delicacy of a surgeon’s touch,” according to the Newark Evening News in February 1923. He took “gaudily winged little insects and fashioned them into designs and pictures, rivaling the minute patchwork and samplers of years ago for intricacy and patience consumed, but exceeding any of these in coloration.” Hampson’s mosaics are now in St. Johnsbury, Vermont, at the Fairbanks Museum & Planetarium, which has received an NEH preservation assistance grant.
Courtesy Jenks Studio, St. Johnsbury, VT
Detail of Hampson's mosaic
Treasure Island Author Robert Louis Stevenson Was a Sickly Man with a Robust Imagination
The Founder of the Appalachian Trail Imagined Something Even Grander
American Bed from 1827 with French Flair
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