Monday, 11 July 2016

John Park’s etching and drypoint, “The End of the Voyage”


John Park (1830–91; fl. 1867-91)
“The End of the Voyage”, c.1860–80, published by the revue “L'Art” in 1880, printed by François Liénard (fl. c.1860s–1880s)
Etching with drypoint on fine laid paper
Size: (sheet) 43.5 x 30.8 cm; (plate) 22.5 x 14.9 cm
The British Museum offers the following description of this print:
“View in a harbour in twilight, shadow of a ship in the right foreground with mast down, further ships mooring behind” (http://www.britishmuseum.org/research/collection_online/collection_object_details.aspx?objectId=3425471&partId=1&searchText=John+Park+the+end+of+the+voyage&page=1)
Lettered below image with title, production detail: "J. Park, del. et sc.", "F. Liénard, Imp. Paris.", and: "L'Art."
Condition: rich and well-printed strong impressions with full margins (as published). There are minute insect bite marks that are visible when the print is held to the light and there is a small tear on the far left margin, otherwise the print is in very good condition for its age.

I am selling this romantic evening etching of a harbour scene showing the last vestiges of light before darkness closes in for the total cost of AU$118 (currently US$89.58/EUR80.76/GBP68.42 at the time of posting this print) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world.
If you are interested in purchasing this remarkable original print from the nineteenth century, please contact me (oz_jim@printsandprinciples.com) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.


For many years I have been collecting etchings by John Park and the reason is simple: he is a master of rendering shadow with line. Usually, Park builds up his shadowy areas with a layering of knotted lines and spiralling rhythms that to my eyes connote a feeling of unease. With this print, however, the representation of the evening darkness seems relaxed and free of the usual knots and spiral of the artist’s inner turmoil. Instead, the build-up of aligned strokes and velvety drypoint lines project a feeling of tranquillity.

Notwithstanding tranquillity of the scene, the stark silhouette of the foreground ship’s rigging adds a prickly note of tension that—again from my personal reading of the image—complements and underpins the otherwise pervading calmness.





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