The William Blake Archive is pleased to announce the publication of a digital edition of To the Public, dated “October 10, 1793.” It first came to light in Gilchrist’s Life of Blake, 1863, where it was introduced with a brief heading that described “a characteristic Prospectus issued by Blake.” It had been transcribed from an “original…in engraved writing printed in blue on a single leaf about 11 x 7 ½ inches…obtained only at the last moment” from a “Mr. Frost”-perhaps William Edward Frost, a painter, member of the Royal Academy, and sometime collector of engravings by Blake’s friend Thomas Stothard (Bentley, Blake Books Supplement, page 142). Like several of Blake’s letters, then, his 1793 prospectus is known only from the transcription of unknowable accuracy from Gilchrist’s biography.Continue reading
At the beginning of summer, my mom, who’s a sixth-grade English teacher, asked me to take her classes for a day. Working with young kids is a little out of the ordinary for a grad student, but it seemed like a good way to get my feet wet with teaching composition on the horizon. Plus, getting a glimpse of the potential obstacles, needs, and interests of an eleven-year-old learner was bound to offer me a valuable perspective that I may not otherwise get.
The William Blake Archive is pleased to announce the publication of nineteen separate prints designed and etched or engraved by Blake. The original works are housed in seven collections, including the Bodleian Library, British Museum, Robert N. Essick collection, Fitzwilliam Museum, Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and National Gallery of Art, Washington. These separate prints join two others, Deaths Door and George Cumberland’s Card, and four series of prints, all previously published, to complete this important category of Blake’s endeavors as a printmaker.Continue reading
This memorial note is by Kenneth Gross, who teaches English at the University of Rochester. His books include Spenserian Poetics: Idolatry, Iconoclasm, and Magic; The Dream of the Moving Statue; Shakespeare’s Noise; Shylock Is Shakespeare; and Puppet: An Essay on Uncanny Life. It will also appear in the winter issue of the Blake Quarterly.Continue reading
About one-hundred miles north of Atlanta, a colorful, otherworldly folk art environment stands in Summerville, Georgia. Self-taught artist Howard Finster (1916-2001) began work on his Paradise Garden in 1961, using materials such as glass, concrete, and discarded objects to create six sacred buildings. Today, the site remains as a monument to Finster’s prolific life, religious fervor, and distinctive artworks.
This semester I enrolled in a course entitled “Digital History: Historical Worlds, Virtual Worlds, Virtual Museums”— thoroughly intrigued by the course’s description which promised to teach me to “harness emerging technologies to educate the public about the past.” It seemed familiar, yet distant enough from my existing skill set to be rewarding.Continue reading
One of my responsibilities as an Andrew W. Mellon Digital Humanities Fellow at the University of Rochester is contributing to an established digital humanities project. For that reason, I am the newest member of the Blake Archive North Division team. While I do not have a background in William Blake’s works or those of his contemporaries, I study U.S. religious and cultural history, so Blake’s talk of a unity in religion and his flirtation with Swedenborg’s tiered heaven echo what I’ve read in American sources. Blake’s visions are wild and, unlike many religious innovators, he actually drew and painted them.Continue reading
In a departure from my previous investigation into Blake’s use of color, which focused on brightness and change over time, I have here considered the possible relationships between the mythological characters and the overall palette of a copy. For this project, I’ve focused on copies A, M, and O of America a Prophecy, looking at the depictions of the characters Urizen, Orc, and Albion.Continue reading