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Print - Death Mask of David Garrick
  • Death Mask of David Garrick
    Pine, Robert Edge, born 1720 - died 1788
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Death Mask of David Garrick

  • Object:

    Print

  • Place of origin:

    Bath (published)

  • Date:

    1779 (published)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Pine, Robert Edge, born 1720 - died 1788 (maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Mezzotint, ink on laid paper

  • Credit Line:

    Purchased with funds given by the Garrick Club, London

  • Museum number:

    E.138-2009

  • Gallery location:

    British Galleries, Room 118a, case 8

Robert Edge Pine (1730-1788), who worked mainly in Bath, based this mezzotint upon his own drawing of the death-mask of David Garrick, publishing it himself in 1779. The image, which is 'brought to life' by the rendering of the actor's famously expressive eyes, is one of the most enigmatic and startling of all eighteenth-century prints, remarkable both technically and for its highly 'modern' feeling of engagement.

Physical description

Mezzotint of death mask of David Garrick against a black background. Eyes have been articulated.

Place of Origin

Bath (published)

Date

1779 (published)

Artist/maker

Pine, Robert Edge, born 1720 - died 1788 (maker)

Materials and Techniques

Mezzotint, ink on laid paper

Marks and inscriptions

Publish'd', April 4th 1779 by R',E',Pine
scratch letter on plate, within platemark, below image

Garrick
in pencil, lower left

1-
in pencil, lower right

P38008
upside down, in pencil, lower right of back

SC[tick]
upside down, in pencil, lower right of back

PLL[crossed through] PTL
in pencil, upper right of back

CLB
former owner initals in pencil, upper right of back

[6?]7 CM
in pencil, upper right of back

Dimensions

Height: 29.7 cm trimmed, Width: 18.7 cm trimmed, Height: 23.8 cm plate, Width: 15.1 cm plate

Object history note

Purchased Christies South Kensington from collection of Christopher Lennox-Boyd. An early 'scratch-letter proof' state with lettering only lightly indicated. Death mask prints are extremely rare. This is thought to be the only death mask portrait print in mezzotint.

Descriptive line

Mezzotint, scratch letter proof, of The Death Mask of David Garrick, attributed to Robert Edge Pine; Bath, England, 1779

Production Note

Attribution note: 'scratch letter proof'

Materials

Ink; Paper

Techniques

Mezzotint

Subjects depicted

Death mask

Categories

Portraits; Prints

Production Type

Proof

Collection

Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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