Pratt, Frances & Becca Fizell
Encaustic Materials and Methods
New York: Lear Publishers, 1949

This slim octavo volume (only 64 pages of text) has been recognized as an invaluable resource, though one exceedingly difficult to find. Now, for the first time in more than 60 years, it is back in print in an affordable facsimile edition.

Gail Stavitsky calls Encaustic Materials and Methods “the first comprehensive book on encaustic history and techniques” which, with the proviso as “the first modern...” is indeed true; there were, of course, many discussions of the medium in the 17th & 18th centuries. Some, though not all of these archival texts are available, but it is the concise yet detailed summaries of centuries of encaustic practice that make Encaustic Materials and Methods unique.

For more information about the facsimile edition, please click here...

If you would like to notified when the facsimile reprint of Encaustic Materials and Methods is available (anticipated June, 2015), please write to us at and we'll stay in touch. Thank you for your interest.

Stavitsky, Gail. Waxing Poetic: Encaustic Art in America. Montclair, NY: Montclair Art Museum, 1999.


Pratt, Frances
Frances Pratt
New York: Meltzer Gallery, 1960

Exhibition catalog. Specifics unknown. Believed to be extremely rare.


Pratt, Frances
Ancient Mexico in Miniature: Sculpture from the Collection of Frances Pratt
& Bumpei Usui
New York: Cooper-Hewitt Museum, 1966

This is the catalog for an exhibition of 148 small sculptures from her collection. It contains a brief essay by Pratt and a checklist – there are no reproductions. The exhibition at Cooper-Hewitt was on view June 20 through August 19, 1966. There exist bibliographic references to this publication citing the American Federation of the Arts as publisher in 1964, suggesting that the exhibition may have been seen in other venues.

Click here to read Frances Pratt's catalog essay. This is transcribed from a copy in the Cooper-Hewitt archive in the Smithsonian Institution library. Several typographical errors are silently corrected but certain eccentricities of punctuation remain.


Pratt, Frances
Olmec Rock Carvings: Photographs of Drawings by Frances Pratt
New York: Frances Pratt, 1968

Specifics unknown, believed to be extremely rare.


Gay, Carlo T.E. & Frances Pratt (illustrator)
Chalcacingo: Die Amerikanischen Felsbilder-American Rock Paintings and Petroglyphs
Graz, Austria: Akademische Druck-u. Verlagsanstalt, 1971

Appeared in English as Chalcacingo (Portland: International Scholarly Book Service, 1972).

Pratt's first collaboration with Carlo T.E. Gay was greeted with a mixed response. Norman Hammond rejected Gay's “assert[ions of] the unconfirmed and often the improbable with the insouciance of the uncritical” while regarding Pratt's drawings as “the best and most useful part of the book.” Similarly, David Grove was troubled by Gay's “completely subjective” nature of the often “fanciful interpretations with little basis in fact.” He also noted, though, the “number of fine illustrations.” On the other hand, Egerton Sykes felt, despite some reservations, that it would “remain a standard work on Olmec culture for many years to come,” praising its “easily flowing and idiomatic” language.

Grove, David. “Chalcacingo by Carlo T. E. Gay; Xochipala: The Beginnings of Olmec Art by Carlo T. E. Gay,” American Anthropologist 75:4 (August 1973): 1138-1140.

Hammond, Norman. “Chalcacingo by Carlo Gay,” The Antiquaries Journal 55:1 (March 1975): 139.

Sykes, Egerton. “Chalcacingo by Carlo T. E. Gay,” Man 8:1 (March 1973): 117-118.


Gay, Carlo & Frances Pratt (illustrator)
“Paleolithic and Megalithic traits in the Olmec tradition of Mexico,” Almogaren 2 (1971): 67-81.

Specifics unknown. Almogaren - still published - is the journal of Institutum Canarium, Society for the Interdisciplinary Research on the Canary Islands and Mediterranean Cultures. Despite their avowed focus, that they sometimes publish more general findings, as well as participating in the International Federation of Rock Art Organizations, which would seem to explain the apparent anomaly of this paper's appearance.


Gay, Carlo T.E. & Frances Pratt (illustrator)
“Olmec Hieroglyphic Writing,” Archaeology 26:4 (October 1973): 278-288

Adapted from the materials of Chalcacingo, this article was profusely illustrated by Frances Pratt.

Click here for a selection of Pratt's drawings.


Gay, Carlo T.E. & Frances Pratt (illustrator)
Ceramic figures of ancient Mexico: Guerrero, México, Guanajuato, Michoacán, 1600 B.C.-300 A.D.
Graz, Austria: Akademische Druck-u. Verlagsanstalt, 1979

The second major collaborative work by Pratt and Gay is variously listed with either as primary author. Rather like the earlier Chalcacingo, David Kelley observed that the “interpretation is aesthetic and intuitive rather than archaeological” and worried that “farfetched interpretations abound.” Echoing reviews of the previous volume, he also noted the “lavish” illustrations.

Kelley, David. “Ceramic Figures of Ancient Mexico: Guerrero, México, Guanajuato, Michoacán 1600 B.C.-300 A.D. by Frances Pratt & Carlo Gay,” The Hispanic American Historical Review 61:2 (May 1981): 302-303.


Gay, Carlo T. E. & Frances Pratt
Mezcala: ancient stone sculpture from Guerrero, Mexico
Geneva, Switzerland: Balsas Publications, 1992

Specifics unknown.


Prigogine, Ilya and Gaston Burnand, Henri Stierlin, Peter David Joralemon, Carlo Gay, Frances Pratt, Ted J.J. Leyenaar, Justin Kerr, Genevieve Le Fort, Margaret Young-Sanchez and Pierre-Yves Dhinaut
At the Heart of Precolumbian America : The Gérard Geiger Collection
Milan: 5 Continents Editions, 2003

Gerard Geiger was a notable collector of pre-Columbian art. The lavishly illustrated volume documents the collection and offers a number of encomia to it, including “Che viva Guerrero!”, a dialog between Geiger and Carlo T.E. Gay.

NB: the title of the book is given on the dust jacket and spine as At the Heart of precolumbian America” while the title page shows In the Heart of Precolumbian America.

Click here for Frances Pratt's contribution, “The Geiger Collection of Mezcala Miniatures.”

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