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Vernon Hill

1887 - 1953

The Dead Boar by Vernon Hill

The Dead Boar  

  Original etching.
Signed in pencil.
P & I 225 x 147 mm
Original Vernon Hill etching.

Rare. Exceptionally strong, early proof impression. There is an extraordinary three-dimensional effect produced by the deep etched lines of this work, which is accentuated by the careful use of plate tone.

Vernon Hill’s etched works date from between about 1910 and the early 1930’s. They display an extraordinary and highly individual technique through which the contours of the human body are defined by long, unbroken etched lines which curve gradually to define form and shadow. Brightly lit areas are left entirely unshaded and apparently unmodelled, defined solely by a bounding line.

This technique is especially pronounced in the beautifully modelled figure of a naked huntress in The Dead Boar. In this carefully composed etching, the girl’s hair is, quite literally, etched in single strands, the necessary shading being added through the scrupulously selective use of plate tone. The manner in which the artist has introduced light and contrast to this work is also innovative. A central highlight has been produced through the careful introduction of intentional foul-bite to the outer areas of the plate, which are then inked with locally applied tone. The highlights on the girl’s body are made effective by contrast against the etched, cloud-like areas of the background, whilst the deeply shaded areas of her skin are contrasted against the brilliance of the central highlight created from the natural colour of the paper alone. The boar, whilst providing allegorical justification for this subject, plays an entirely secondary role to the poetic figure of the tender huntress as she gazes at the fatal arrow which she has extracted from her prey.

There is an idyllic charm of a spiritual and symbolic nature to this remarkable work.

On mottled-pink laid paper, with full margins and deckle edge. Very good original condition.