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Fine Art
Giants of Palomar Collection of Russell W. Porter Drawings of the 200-Inch Palomar Telescope

RUSSELL W. PORTER: 1871-1949. The Giants of Palomar Collection of Russell W. Porter Drawings of the 200-Inch Palomar Telescope were transfered to the Caltech Archives from Robinson Laboratory by the Astronomy Department on October 27, 2009. The collection consists of 25 original drawings by the artist. Of these, 22 form a series of large technically sophisticated (sometimes referred to as "cutaway") drawings for the 200-inch telescope, with one additional color drawing of the exterior of the Palomar dome. Nineteen of the large drawings were published first in 1947 in the booklet "Photographic Giants of Palomar", along with the color drawing as the cover art. A slightly different set of 19 were reprinted in 1983 under the title "Giants of Palomar." The two additional smaller drawings in the collection, more properly sketches, belong among the many miscellaneous illustrations created by Russell Porter during the years he worked on the design of the 200-inch telescope.

Most of the large drawings are executed on 4-ply acid-free artist's illustration board. At least two are drawn on a somewhat thinner board. The color drawing is done with pastel, egg tempera, and possibly graphite. All of the other drawings are rendered in combinations of graphite, ink, charcoal, and gouache to create tones of gray to black, with white highlights.


ID: 2009-00062
Porter, Russell W.

Creation Jan. 1, 1936 through Dec. 31, 1947

MEDIUM: Graphite, ink, gouache, pastel on artist's illustration board, 4 ply; FORMAT: Drawing; LENGTH: 30 x 40 inches, average; QUANTITY: 25 drawings

Topics: Astronomy

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