Maxfield Parrish's parents
Daybreak Films, LLC was founded in 2010 by Gary Meyers to produce a high quality documentary series regarding America's greatest forgotten illustrators.
Daybreak Films proposes to create “The Great American Imagist”, a television series tracing the fascinating art and the compelling stories of the artists who created these great Iconic American images at a the dawn of mass-market popular culture. A highly entertaining and informative look at some of the most productive and talented artists in American history, as well as an opportunity to historically document some of their most important works for future generations to enjoy and learn from. These artist of the “Golden Age of American Illustration include Howard Pyle, N C Wyeth, Maxfield Parrish, J C Lyendecker, Norman Rockwell, Charles Dana Gibson, among other luminary illustrators. The have become the world’s first practitioners of mass production imagery yet their works mostly disregarded by the fine arts community. “The Great American Imagist” is shot in high definition video with the exclusive co-operation of the National Museum of American Illustration in Newport, Rhode Island. Distribution of such a significant series will be through worldwide public programing (PBS, NHK, BBC-4), art museums, and all relevant art educational institutions. A revealing look at a part of our American culture yet to be explored in such detail. Considered until recently to be “commercial art” and fleetingly ephemeral, these artists’ works have today become a significant and enduring art form, the very mainstay of American civilization. Their powerful work executed for books, magazines, and advertising is now sought after by collectors such as Steven Spielberg, George Lucas, Ross Perot and Steve Jobs. A Maxfield Parrish painting recently sold by Mel Gibson fetched $5.8 million, it’s last public exhibition filmed exclusively for this documentary and a Norman Rockwell recently sold at auction for $46 million. From the late 19th century until the advent of television, these artists created a vision of American society in a gentler, slower time. The fashion trends of the Gibson Girl, the masculine ideal of the Arrow Collar Man, Norman Rockwell's depiction of Thanksgiving dinner - all of which are imprinted upon the nation’s consciousness. J C Leyendecer’s magazine covers even created social customs: the gift of flowers for Mother’s Day and the baby ushering in the New Year. The “Great American Imagist” invented ubiquitous national icons that affected how American’s saw themselves and how other cultures saw them. “The Great American Imagist” tells turbulent personal stories of the artist and their triumphs, tragedies, scandals, and in some cases Bohemian lifestyles. The series traces their careers as they rise from obscurity to personalities of international renown. “The Great American Imagist” is intended for all ages and all cultures to learn about the art and artists who dreamt up a vision of American life that holds America in it’s grip today. The story of this visual record of American civilization will be told through archive High Definition video along with period photographs and archive film; engaging interviews with the artist’ families, art historians, and celebrity collectors; sweeping location photography, and beautiful images of the artworks themselves. Daybreak Films has secured unprecedented access to the collections of the National Museum of American Illustration. The museum, the largest of it’s kind in the United States, houses the works of Maxfield Parrish, Norman Rockwell, J C Leyendecker, Howard Pyle, N C Wyeth, Charles Dana Gibson, and Jessie Wilcox Smith, among many others. Shooting in HD video will reveal the delicate brushstrokes, luminous surfaces, saturated colors, and dramatic imagery in exquisite detail. The starting point of the series will be a 90-minute program on the life and career of Maxfield Parrish, a leading light of the Golden Age Illustrators, which includes a rare audio interview with the reclusive artist.
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