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This Emil Armin woodblock print is a great example of Social Realism, WPA, or US Regionalism Art from the 1920's. Emil worked in a similar style up until the 50's, but I'd guess the print is from the latter, judging from the subject matter.

Emil Armin was a great painter and print maker who landed in the Chicago area direct from Romania. He went to the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and graduated in 1920. He did quite a large number of woodblock prints that dealt with both his social and regional experiences (Via Chicago) as well as his religion (Jewish), and his paintings were awesome.

This print is from anywhere from the 20's to the 50's (I'd guess more towards the 20s), and it depicts a scene on the Wharf. There are a number of figures who are fishing (instead of working) as well as a number of figures going by in boats. In the background there is a steam powered crane and what appears to be a large bank of buildings (?) build right up to the water front.

As far as condition goes, there are a few: First off, the print is firmly sandwiched in between layers of mat board. This could probably be easily remedied with some careful use of bestine. (The mat board itself is not in great shape, and you would likely want to remat and reframe the print.) Secondly, the image was once framed much closer to the image itself, and the paper with the image on it has discolored a bit from the paper where the old mating once was and has some extremely minor dinginess to it. There is also a small (water) stain on the paper at the bottom (that could be framed out)(pict3). It is at least a 1/4" below the signature (it is signed, both in the block and by hand)(Pict 4), #'s of the print ("handprint 22/50") and the title of the print ("The Wharf").

Over all, a historic print in very good shape that would look absolutely amazing if rematted and framed correctly!


more wood blocks

13 1/4" x 11 1/2"

(visible measurement paper)
7 1/4" x 5 1/4"

(block) print measurement
approx 6" x 4"

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Social Realism woodblock print, WPA, Regionalism, 1920s, Emil Armin, "The Wharf", Black and green,


  • Vintage item from the 1920s
  • Material: paper
  • Only ships within United States.
  • Feedback: 281 reviews
  • Favorited by: 13 people