Edward Bawden (1903 – 1989)

Aesop’s Fables: Peacock and Magpie (1970)


Linocut print

63 x 75 cm

Signed, numbered 11/50, and titled in pencil.

A delightful print illustrating Aesop’s fable of the Peacock and Magpie. In the fable, the birds are searching for a king, and the Peacock puts himself forward. The birds are about to make him king because of his charming plumage, but a Magpie asks the Peacock how he might defend the birds from predators. The Peacock has no answer. Aesop’s moral is that those in power must be suited to the task, and not just vain pretenders. The artist’s use of vibrant colour brings the tale to life.

Edward Bawden was an English painter, illustrator and graphic artist, known for his prints, book covers, posters, and garden metalwork furniture. Bawden taught at the Royal College of Art, where he had been a student, worked as a commercial artist, and served as a war artist in World War II. He illustrated several books and painted various public murals, and his work and career are often associated with that of his contemporary, Eric Ravilious.

Condition: generally very good; small stain to extremity that will be hidden under mount.

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