William Blake (1757 - 1827) - The Bard - published in 1972 for the William Blake Trust, London - A Set of 14 Sheets
Collotype and hand-colouring on wove paper with separately printed text on laid paper (unbound , unframed). Part of William Blake water colour designs for the Poems of Thomas Gray, published by Trianon Press for the William Blake Trust, London 1972.
Measurements: Each Folio: 42 x32.6cm (approx 16.50 x 12.75 inches) Total Number of Sheets: 14
Please note that since we can only show 9 images, should you have an interest, please email us for the remaining 5. The price for the entire Set is US$ 420 (equal to US $30 per Sheet).
William Blake's work is represented in all the major museums in the world. His prints and etchings are very rare and sought after by museums and collectors, and highly contended at auctions - see Sale No 8849 on 26 April 2012 Lot 42-27 listed by Sotheby's New York at US $40,000- $70,000 or more for each Folio.
LITERATURE: Elizabeth Luther Cary, The Art of William Blake, 1907; Anthony Blunt, The Art of William Blake, Oxford 1959; David Bindman, Blake As an Artist, Oxford and New York, 1977; Martin Butlin, The Paintings and Drawings of William Blake, vol. 1, New Haven and London 1981.
William Blake (1757 1827) was a poet, illustrator, engraver, draughtsman, writer and painter whose efforts, due to their idiosyncratic and unorthodox nature, were largely unappreciated in his own lifetime. The knowledge Blake gained from working as an engraver enabled him to produce his own work in which he surrounded his poems with his own hand-coloured illustration. A powerful imagination is evident in every aspect of Blake's work. Among his most important works are the Illustrations of the Book of Job (1825), and the hundred or so watercolours to Dante's Divine Comedy. A deeply mystical man, Blake claimed he had visionary experiences that prompted him to invent his own belief system in which the creator of the universe, whom he renamed Urizen, brought vengeance on mankind through Jesus, renamed Orc. His social and political conscience railed against the prevailing academic painting of the eighteenth century. He saw it as representing all that he came to despise about the rational, materialistic age in which he found himself.
"The Bard. A Pindaric Ode" is founded on a Welsh tradition that King Edward the First, when he completed the conquest of that country, ordered all the Bards that fell into his hands to be put to death. He was confronted by a lone survivor who prophesied the doom of the king and the successors of his blood. The surviving bard is shown by Blake standing on a rock above the river Conway, accompanied by the ghosts of his fellows. Blake then describes how King Edward and his Queen Eleanor are prostrated, with their horses, at the foot of a rock on which the Bard stands; prostrated by the terrors of his harp on the margin of the river Conway whose waves bear up a corpse of a slaughtered bard at the foot of the rock. The armies of Edward are seen winding away amongst the mountains....