Or are you looking for Search the Archives?

Please complete the form to email this item.

Printing block

  • Place of origin:

    Great Britain (made)

  • Date:

    1927-1928 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Platt, John Edgar, born 1886 - died 1967 (artist)
    Platt, John Edgar, born 1886 - died 1967 (maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Woodblock cut on both sides

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Mrs Liza Axford, grand-daughter of the artist

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level F, case EDUC, shelf 9L

John Edgar Platt is a key artist in the history of twentieth-century British colour printing. This collection of four woodblocks for ' Red Chestnut' (E.1626-1629-2000) provide us with a picture of his working methods. 8 blocks were needed for a single colour print (the V&A has the finished print, museum no. E.341-1986). To produce a colour print the artist usually has to cut a separate block for each colour, on each block cutting only the part of the design intended to be printed in that colour. This requires careful planning to ensure that the design is cut on the block in exactly the right place so that when printed each colour registers with the others. In this case where two colours are sufficiently far apart in the design to allow cutting on one block, Platt has taken advantage of this and cut two colours on one block. The blocks have been cut on both sides for economy.

Physical description

Woodblock for printing 'Red Chestnut' cut on both sides for parts of the same image (for different colours) featuring leaves and flowers and details of birds, with corners cut for image frame on both sides.

Place of Origin

Great Britain (made)


1927-1928 (made)


Platt, John Edgar, born 1886 - died 1967 (artist)
Platt, John Edgar, born 1886 - died 1967 (maker)

Materials and Techniques

Woodblock cut on both sides

Marks and inscriptions

in white on edge


Length: 52.4 cm max, Width: 24.5 cm max, Depth: 2.9 cm max

Object history note

Gift from artist's grand-daughter.

Descriptive line

Printing block. Woodblock, one of four for printing in colour. John Edgar Platt. Red Chestnut, 1927-1928..


Wood; Ink



Subjects depicted

Birds; Leaf (plant material); Red chestnut


Printmaking techniques

Production Type



Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

Large image request

Please confirm you are using these images within the following terms and conditions, by acknowledging each of the following key points:

Please let us know how you intend to use the images you will be downloading.