Nab this before I change my mind! I just discovered the work of Alice Wanke this past year and what I especially like about this trio-color design of hers is that it has been customized with a love message -- literally making it a one-of-a kind postcard. The arrow through the heart with the words "Is Yours for Life" was added by Gaston and sent to Mademoiselle Blanche Jackson in 1906. Blanche Jackson sounds very English, don't you think? Perhaps that's why Gaston sent this particular card. There isn't much known about Ms. Wanke but many authors say she was British, too, according to Neudin's "Les Meilleures Cartes Postales d'Illustrateurs".
However, the Metropolitan Postcard Club of New York disagrees, saying she was Austrian, born in Vienna in 1873. "After studying at the Kustgewerbeschule in Vienna, Wanke primarily became a graphic artist who illustrated magazines and postcards. Even though she largely worked in an Art Nouveau style, the graphics on her cards can be highly decorative in different ways."
It is indeed agreed upon that she called Vienna her home and worked there but was not a part of the famous Vienna Secession.
Ms. Wanke died in 1936. Most of her cards were produced from 1900 to 1910. This card with the undivided back dates its printing to circa 1903 but as you can see from the franking, it was postally sent in 1906.
This card shows some wear at the corners (a couple of light creases at the tips) but overall, for its age and considering that has a cream background, it has survived the intervening 109 years mostly unscathed.
Size: about 3.5 by 5.5 inches.
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