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Edward Gordon Craig

1872 - 1966

The Storm, King Lear by Edward Gordon Craig

The Storm, King Lear   1920

  Original woodcut and engraving.
Signed and dated twice in pencil.
Ref: Lister, Great Images of British Printmaking, no.37 (Robin Garton, London, 1978, p.60)
S 242 x 175 mm; I 168 x 158 mm
Original Edward Gordon Craig wood engraving.

Outstanding signed proof impression of Edward Gordon Craig’s most famous wood engraving. A superb example, hand printed by Edward Gordon Craig himself, from the edition of 150 signed and numbered proofs printed upon first completion of the block in 1920. This particular proof impression was chosen by the artist himself as a presentation and exhibition proof in 1923 and is dated again accordingly.

Edward Gordon Craig’s masterpiece of wood engraving, The Storm, King Lear depicts Lear, the Earl of Kent and the Fool from Act III, Scene iv of Shakespeare’s play. In this remarkable work Edward Gordon Craig has used a fascinating and innovative combination of woodcutting and engraving to produce an image of striking atmospheric power and expressive dramatic effect.

Edward Gordon Craig’s importance in the re-introduction of white-line wood engraving to this country cannot be overstated. He was, without doubt, the supreme exponent and the principal protagonist of the technique this century. Son of the actress Ellen Terry, Edward Gordon Craig’s prime source of inspiration throughout his life was the theatre. The Storm, King Lear reflects the bold simplicity of space and form which Edward Gordon Craig introduced to theatrical set design and, as with all of Craig’s graphic works, must be viewed as the work of a great artist of the theatre in order to be appreciated to the full. In The Storm, King Lear, Craig’s overriding obsession with the theatre and his genius as a creative wood engraver have combined to produce a tour de force of original printmaking.

On fine Japan tissue, with full margins. Very fine condition.