The year could be any year, the set could be any set, but today I'm taking you back to 1971, and the annual Art series issued in Czechoslovakia. There are two values from that set, which I'm featuring today, both engraved by Josef Hercík.
The 1k value depicts the painting 'Waiting', by Weiner-Kral, and the 1k80 depicts the painting 'Veruna Čudová' by Mánes.
The reason I've picked these is that I've also got the first day covers accompanying this set. Now I normally don't go for any sort of covers, but these are special in that the covers, too, include engravings, which makes them very desirable indeed!
The FDC for the 1k value shows yet another painting by Weiner-Kral, called 'Dream'. It is very much in the same style and therefore a perfect accompaniment. It, of course, also shows how beautiful the stamp would have been, had it been a monochrome engraving. But that's probably just me sitting on my hobbyhorse.
The FDC for the 1k80 value shows the painting 'Jan Postava', again perfectly fitting for the stamp subject.
My philatelic friend Florián from the Czech Republic sent me this translation of a Wikipedia page on these two paintings:
1854, Mánes went to Čechy pod Kosířem, a small
village near Prostějov in Moravia, where he stayed in the manor of his friend, Count
Frederick Silva-Taroucca. ... Here he sought folk types and got deeply interested in the original Moravian folk costumes. His friend, Count Silva Taroucca advised him to stay at Bílovice Manor as well, whose owner was Count Hugo Jakob Josef Logothetti. Count Hugo asked him to portray his beloved Veruna. He painted
Veruna Čudová in the costume of Moravian Slovakia, and ... later on, as her male counterpart, he portrayed a
young man from the nearby village of Březolupy, Jan Postava in folk costume. ..."
The artwork on these covers was printed directly from the master die, engraved by Hercík. This was, apparently, quite the norm at the time (and still is, I'm happy to say), so we might finally have found an excuse to buy up all these cheap FDCs that nobody's ever interested in!