The Baker's Kerchief Dec 25, 2010 2:23:02 GMT -5
Post by GoetzKluge on Dec 25, 2010 2:23:02 GMT -5
left: Segment from a draft by Henry Holiday to Lewis Carroll's The Hunting of the Snark. It depicts the Baker when he visited his uncle (1876).
right: John Everett Millais: Segment from Christ in the House of His Parents (1850) depicting Mary (and a part of Christ's face in the upper right corner).
This example very nicely shows how Holiday worked on the construction of his conundrums in his illustrations to Lewis Carroll's The Hunting of the Snark. Even though Holiday copied a face from a face, he reinterprated shapes of face elements from the source face in order to represent different face elements with a resembling shape in the target face. The baker's ear is based on a shape in the depiction of Marie's face which is no ear. The same partially applies to the Baker's nose and the baker's eye.
We know quoting in texts from other texts as an art, e.g. mastered by Tom Stoppard. We know textual conundrums, e.g. the ones by Lewis Carroll. Graphical quotes in the illustrations from other illustrations, paintings etc. deserve the same respect when done well. And Holiday constructed his conundrums very well. The focus on textual analysis of the Snark seems to lead us to underestimate Holiday's paralleling Carroll's wordplay with is own means as an graphical artist.
By the way: In 1882, Alfred Parsons turned the Baker's ear into a part of a chair in Charles Darwin's study at Downe. Holiday quoted and was quoted. Artists like Parsons, Holiday and Millais (see below) do such things and have fun when playing their game. Today Mahendra Singh is maintaining the tradition, in the Snark and beyond the beast.
left: Henry Holiday's depiction of the Baker's visit to his uncle (1876) in Lewis Carroll's "The Hunting of the Snark" (engraved by Joseph Swain). Outside of the window are some of the Baker's 42 boxes.
right top: John Everett Millais: Christ in the House of His Parents (1850).
right bottom: Anonymous: Edward VI and the Pope, An Allegory of Reformation, mirrored view (16th century). Henry VIII is on the right side (original: left). Iconoclasm depicted in the window. Under the window 2nd from left is Thomas Cranmer who wrote the 42 Articles in 1552.
Millais quoted from the 16th century painting. Holiday quoted from Millais' painting as well as from the 16th century painting. And, as said, Alfred Parsons quoted from Holiday's illustration.
Update 2010-11-19: NPG 4165 Edward VI and the Pope was, until 1874, the property of Thomas Green of Ipswich and Upper Wimpole Street, a collection 'Formed by himself and his Family during the last Century and early Part of the present Century' (Source: Dr. Margaret Aston: The King's Bedpost: Reformation and Iconography in a Tudor Group Portrait, 1994). Thus, when Millais' Christ in the House of His Parents ('The Carpenter's Shop') was painted in 1849-1850, the painting was part of a private collection. It was sold by Christie's 20 March 1874 (lot 9) to an unknown buyer unknown, that is, when Holiday started with his illustrations to The Hunting of the Snark.
left: 1876, Henry Holiday: Segment of an illustration to Lewis Carroll's The Hunting of the Snark
middle: 16th century, anonymous: Redrawn segment of Edward VI and the Pope, An Allegory of Reformation (mirror view).
right: 1564, Redrawn segment of a print Ahasuerus consulting the records by Philip Galle after Maarten van Heemskerck. The resemblance to the image in the middle was discovered and shown by Dr. Margaret Aston in 1994 in The King's Bedpost: Reformation and Iconography in a Tudor Group Portrait (p. 68). She also compared the bedpost to Heemskerck's Esther Crowned by Ahasuerus.
Update 2010-12-25: In Margaret Aston's The King's Bedpost (1994) the author reports (p. 208) that "Edward VI. and his Council" first appeared in Christie's sale of 20 March 1874. It belonged to Thomas Green, Esq., of Ipswitch and Upper Wimpole Street (Thomas Green III). In 1856 the Suffolk Chronicle described the colletion to which the painting belonged as "by far the most valuable collection of paintings in Ipswitch". In 1830 the collection was in Brook Street, Ipswitch. Sarah An Birkett (since long in the service of the Green family and Thomas Green III's sometime nurse) took care of the collection. In 1843 it moved to another location in London. Margaret Aston: "What happened to is between then and the sale of 1874 is obscure." As John Everett Millais took reference to the Edward VI... painting before 1850 and Henry Holiday before 1876, both artists must have known that painting well.