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Hammer, Victor, 1882-1967

 Person

Dates

  • Existence: 1882 - 1967

Victor Hammer (1882-1967), born in Vienna, was a trained architect with a particular interest in calligraphy and printing. From 1898-1908 he was a student at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna. After exhibiting his various works in the years leading up to World War I, he spent four months in combat as a soldier with the Fourth Austrian Infantry Regiment. The remainder of the war he spent as a war artist in the Urals and in Constantinople. In 1919 he returned to his studio in Vienna and began his printing career, publishing Milton's Samson Agonistes in 1931. Hammer remained in Vienna until 1939. After the outbreak of World War II, he immigrated to the United States, and secured a teaching position in the art department at Wells College. Here he established both the Hammer Press and the Wells College Press, cut his third type-face (known as American Uncial), and continued to paint portraits. In 1948 Hammer accepted a position at Transylvania University in Lexington, Kentucky. He continued his work there until his death in 1967.

Hammer is best known for his typeface designs, engravings, and woodcuts, though he is also known as a portraitist and a painter of religious or allegorical images. Hammer's typefaces are unique, as he would create types through cutting his own punches, instead of drawing letters and relying on others to cut them.

There are four presses that are identified with the work of Victor Hammer: the Stamperia del Santuccio (established in Florence, 1929), The Hammer Press, The Wells College Press (Aurora, New York), and The Anvil Press (Lexington, Kentucky).

Found in 1 Collection or Record:

Victor Hammer Private Press Collection

 Collection — Box: Box 1
Identifier: MS137
Abstract Victor Hammer (1882-1967) began his printing career in earnest in 1919 in Vienna, publishing Milton's Samson Agonistes in 1931. After the outbreak of World War II, he immigrated to the United States, and secured a teaching position in the art department at Wells College. Here he established both the Hammer Press and the Wells College Press, cut his third type-face (known as American Uncial), and continued to paint portraits. In 1948 Hammer accepted a position at...
Dates: 1931-1993; Other: Date acquired: 11/30/2001