Nicolas Markovitch (Serbian-French, 1894-1964), artist, watercolorist, architect and block printer. Markovitch used more than a few pseudonyms, such as; A. Marc or just Marc, and J. Philippe or Jean Philippe. Alternate sources state other pseudonyms with the full name listed as Andre Marc or Andre Marc Rothenburg, which are both still incorrect for the artist. Markovitch was an architect who worked and lived in France, and is primarily known for his architectural paintings of city buildings, cathedrals and monuments, along with Swiss, Italian, German, English and Belgian landscapes, cityscapes, mountainscapes & seascapes, lake & marine scenes, and many scenes in the U.S. especially cityscapes of New York City and other places such as Gloucester, MA.
Markovitch painted watercolor illustrations for several books (Paris, Editions, Alpina) from the late 1920’s-early 40’s, and is credited for the watercolors in the Editions with his real name Nicolas Markovitch or N. Markovitch. He was one of the best watercolorists of the time and went on to do a lot of work with the Stehli Brothers company Stehli Frères, Editeurs, Zurich, Switzerland throughout the 1930’s and 40’s. Stehli Frères published many different watercolor series of his works, and they were printed in various sizes, typically from about 9” x 12” to 12” x 16”, and others as large as 18” x 24”.
For his original fine art watercolor paintings or illustration work, he always signed them with his true name Nicolas Markovitch. For the chromolithographic reproductions or other prints of his landscapes and architectural series he signed them with the pseudonym name of A. Marc or just Marc, and for his flower/botanical prints he signed them with the pseudonym of Jean Philippe or just J. Philippe.
Purportedly his watercolors were originally done for either his architectural work that he did in France or simply as a hobby. Either way, it eventually turned into a profitable venture for him through his numerous book illustrations and published lithographs. His watercolors show very fine technical ability and artistic skill, especially with his architectural series, and usually feature great composition with wonderful colors. His lithos were published and distributed around the world and are very collectible today.
The Stehli Frères lithos were usually printed on a nice heavier watercolor-like paper stock with rough edges to give the appearance of an actual watercolor painting and were done with very high lithographic quality at the time. The printing quality was so good that many people over the years have thought they were original works of art and many still make the same mistake even today.
Before the start of World War II, Markovitch lived in Figeac, a small commune in the southwest of France. During the war, Markovitch was deported to Slovakia, where he later worked in a deportation camp in Povrly (German Pömmerle), Czech Republic. He was a prisoner for two years before his liberation at the end of the war and upon his return, he weighed about 77lbs. (35kgs). He continued to live in Figeac for a while, painting many scenes of the town and surrounding areas. Markovitch died in 1964, in Bourg-la-Reine, a commune in the southern suburbs of Paris, France.
(Written & compiled by Mark Strong of Meibohm Fine Arts, Inc., East Aurora, NY, meibohmfinearts.com, sources: Our art archives; Artconversation.com, Artcyclopedia: The Conversation, multiple previous posts and threads on the artist Markovitch, Marc and Philippe; eBay, prior listings with information; abebooks.de; mcleanbooks.com; Wikipedia; iantiqueonline.com, additional biographical information from a blog response to one of my posts, by username Reynal, a grandson of a very dear friend of Nicolas Markovitch in France.)