Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Frank McIntosh's Asia Magazine Covers - Art Deco Asian Art

Have you ever run across artwork that you couldn't stop thinking about? That's how it's been for me with the covers of Asia magazine done by artist Frank McIntosh in the 1920s and early '30s. I had never heard of either the publication or the artist until a few months ago - and wow, little did I know what I had been missing.

The Princess Badour by Frank McIntosh, 1926
 Asia magazine, published in the United States, was devoted to making Americans more aware of the cultures and current events of the Far East. It was the brainchild of young adventurer Gertrude Emerson Sen - a descendent of Ralph Waldo Emerson - who would later take off on a trek around the world and settle down in the Himalayas.

As she steered the magazine through its first few years, the covers were modest. But by 1926, a 25-year-old illustrator named Frank McIntosh was on the scene, turning out striking Art Deco images in full color.

 McIntosh, who grew up in Oregon and graduated from the California School of Fine Arts, brought Asia magazine to new heights in the next few years with his hauntingly beautiful covers.

I've included a few of them here, but there are even more over at To see more of McIntosh's work at, click here.

I can't decide which one I like best. How about you? 

Chinese Fairy Tale by Frank McIntosh, 1927

Craftsman by Frank McIntosh, 1928

Innovation by Frank McIntosh, 1932

Burma - Gossip by Frank McIntosh, 1926

Old China by Frank McIntosh, 1930


If, like me, you just have to have one, all of these - and many other reasonably priced McIntosh prints - are available at in a variety of sizes. To see them, click here. You'll also be able to see the colorful Hawaiian illustrations he did for cruise line advertising and menus.

3 Read comments and submit your own:

Anonymous said...

Anyone with an interest in all things Asian is in for a treat with this new blog. Educational, informative, entertaining and extremely knowledgeable about the subjects featured. Passion and a lot of hard work and time spent on research are sure to make this blog a success. Keep up the good work!

Anonymous said...

I just had the same experience - Couldn't sleep last night thinking about Mcintosh's exquisite Asia covers - just wish I had enough $ to buy all or a least several

Pagoda Road said...

I'm glad to know I'm not the only one who's been "sleepless in Asia"!

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