Sunday, December 28, 2008

Prints and Drawings Of Monsters
James Torrance, drawing from 1893. " "The story of Conn Eda", the hissing of the monster was heard at a great distance, illustration to 'Irish Fairy and Folk Tales' by William Butler Yeats, 1893, p.313; three snake-like creatures surrounding a figure on horseback. Brush drawing in grey ink and bodycolour (?)"

I think I just stumbled across the inspiration for The Neverending Story.

Giulio Bonasone - Achillis Bocchii Bonon. symbolicarum quaestionum de Universo genere quas serio ludebat (Emblems of Achilles Bocchius.) engraving, 1555. "Plate 61. Menelaus binding Proteus to force him to reveal the future, below are monsters; from a series of 150 engravings."

Domenico Tiepolo - A centaur attacking a seven-headed monster. Pen and grey-brown ink, with grey-brown wash, 1742-1804.

William Strang - 'A matter of fact' aquatint etching, 1901. From thirty illustrations to short stories by Rudyard Kipling. "In the foreground, seen from behind, five figures on the steamer the Rathmines, looking out to sea at the two sea monsters; the sightless and whiskered heads and finned backs of both monsters visible."

I've posted a lot of sea monsters here over the years but I think this is the most disturbing artwork I've seen of this subject matter. There's just something really horrifying about seeing the giant balding whiskered head of an old man on the body of a swimming monster. And the composition in this is amazing, rarely does the artist show the monster at sea from the perspective of inside the ship. Looking at this you really feel like a passenger or deck hand frozen in awe at this nightmarish and fantastic scene.

Artist unknown, engraving from 1510-1550.

Giulio Campagnola, engraving with stippling, 1509.
"The astrologer; a bearded man measuring a clestial globe next to a monster,"

Étienne Delaune - Africca, from series titled "The Four Parts Of The World" engraving, 1575.

Luca Ciamberlano - engraving , 1600-40. "Jonah on the shore with the whale threatening him on the left."

Richard Gaywood, etching, 1650-1668. "A stormy sea with two masted ships (and three more on the horizon) and a boat in which a party of hunters are spearing an improbable whale."

All works found at The British Museum.

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