The Counsellor, King, Warrior, Mother, and Child in the Tomb, from the book The Grave, by Robert Blair

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William Blake (English, 1757–1827)
after Luigi Schiavonetti (Italian, 1765–1810)
The Counsellor, King, Warrior, Mother, and Child in the Tomb, from the book The Grave, by Robert Blair, 1813
Etching
plate: 8 1/4 × 10 7/16 in. (20.96 × 26.51 cm) sheet: 11 3/16 × 14 15/16 in. (28.42 × 37.94 cm)
Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Meyer Gunther M1991.479
Photo credit: John R. Glembin
Not Currently on View

William Blake designed illustrations for The Grave—a morbid poem by Robert Blair originally published in 1743—but he ultimately did not etch them himself. Like Goya, Blake believed in the importance of artistic vision and broke with the traditional techniques of etching to form his own innovative forms and processes. Robert Cromek, who commissioned this print, disapproved of Blake’s experimental style. Instead, Cromek chose the reproductive engraver Luigi Schiavonetti to etch Blake’s designs in a more conventional and popular manner. This division of labor was common in earlier printmaking, but Blake considered it an insult.

Exhibition label for "Daring Technique: Goya and the Art of Etching" on view in the Bradley Family Gallery, April 20–September 9, 2018.

Exhibition History
Daring Technique: Goya and the Art of Etching, Milwaukee Art Museum, April 20 – September 9, 2018.


This information is subject to change as the result of ongoing research.