CHRISTMAS CARDS • We, have received from the Medici Society,
7 Grafton Street, W. I, Messrs. C.,W. Faulkner, 81 Golden Lane, E.C. 1, Messrs. Raphael Tuck, Raphael House, Moorfields, E.C. 2, ,Messrs, F. J. Ward, 3 Baker Street, W. 1, The Challenge, 92 Great Russell Street, W.C. 1, Messrs. Mowbray, .28 Margaret St t, W. 1, and the Trustees of the British Museum, W.C. 1, ,selc tions of their Christmas, Cards, and Calendars for 1986, at prices ranging from Id. to 5s. As a whole the standard is impressively high, though there is still an unnecessarily larke proportion of seasonable' trash. Much:We best cards as usual.. from the British Museum and the Victoria altAlbeit, Whose excellent reproductions of • paintings, stained gimp, Elizabeilian maps and objects ., from the Eumorfopoulos Collection are unrivalled in the combination of artistic meat and lowness of price. Some excellent cards-reproductions of David Cox, Reynolds, de Hooch and Augustus JolirialSo come from.the Medici Society. In taste and production moat of these are up to the level of the British. Museum cards, but apart froiti this series the Medici Society's cards are disap- pointing. Messrs.' Vyard have a good and varied series of coloured and black-and-white reproductions from modern English artists, inclUding Claude Flight, Jack, Barker and Gwen Itaverat : they also produce some pleasant photographic cards of animals. Messrs. Faulkner, Messrs, Raphael Tuck and The Challenge are less ambitious and between them (The Challenge rather more gaily than the Others) ring the changes on most of the traditional Christmas Card'subjects some of their cards arc rather nauseatingly sentimental, but for the; Most part they are competent and mildly-pleasant. Messrs: IVIOw- bray's cards arc chiefly deVotional some' of the tittirc".etpen- sive are -up to the standard of some of,thaother firms' cards, but..the cheaper ones:, which ,poOrly. And tatteleSslylpie- duced, make the dreariest reininders of Christmas imaginable. The- calendars reach_ a_ lower _standard as a whole than-tfie cards. The Medici Society produce some charming reproduc- tions (the best of them perhaps a. very decorative' picture Of a Conneniara cottage by l'vliss Letitia Ilarniluin arid a flower- painting b' Mr. Philip Corinard)'and "Messrs:' Ward. have Rime very pleasant wood-engravings. Apart fronl- these the calendars are divided about equally between the banal and the repulsive.