Edward Burra (1905 – 1976)
(1928 – 1929, this edition published 1971)
10 x 15 cm; sheet size 24 x 34 cm
Numbered 15/45 lower left and initialled EB lower right.
Published by the Nicholas Treadwell Gallery in 1971.
Burra’s woodcut of a male and a female figure, entitled ‘Café’. The two figures, seemingly a couple, gaze at one another intensely and intimately, giving the impression of having been interrupted by the viewer. Both figures’ faces bear tattoo-like markings: he a star and the moon, she a geometric design resembling a noughts-and-crosses board. The “café” in which they sit is a dreamily abstract landscape full of palms and other plants from the tropics.
Edward Burra was an English painter, draughtsman, and printmaker. He travelled to Italy in 1925, the same year he met the noted British Surrealist Paul Nash, and both of these influences are evident in this woodcut. Nash introduced Burra to woodcut-making in 1928, the same year that Burra began this woodcut series. His first solo show was held at the Leicester Galleries in April 1929, and he exhibited with the English Surrealists in the 1930s.
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