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Haydn Reynolds Mackey


Pietá by Haydn Reynolds Mackey

Pietá   c.1937-38

  Original linocut with oil paint colouring.
Signed with monogram in the linoblock.
S 505 x 370 mm (average); I 402 x 262 mm
Unique pair of trial proofs – one printed in black ink alone, the other finished in colours with oil paints by the artist.

This dramatic large-scale linocut is undoubtedly one of H.R.Mackey’s greatest printed works. Highly charged in both its religious and visual content, this image demonstrates perfectly the superb effect which could be achieved through the artist’s inspired colour technique. The black ink proof has been printed with intentionally varied contrast in each section of the image and this effect has been repeated in the colour painted proof. The colour proof has been hand-painted with vibrant colours which remain totally fresh and unfaded. This pair of proofs make a striking display as a demonstration of colour printing techniques (for details of H.R.Mackey's unique colour printmaking technique see the extended biography page).

Both of these proofs are on untrimmed loose sheets of tissue, prior to being laid on backing paper, thus revealing the artist’s technique to the full. Some expertly repaired and totally unobtrusive defects consistent with working proofs of this nature, otherwise generally very good condition.

Haydn Mackey exhibited an impression of this work as item no.11 at the Eighteenth Exhibition of The Society of Graphic Art in London in 1938, priced at the then considerable sum of £4 4s.0d.