My friends Jeremy Greenwood and Alan Swerdlow of The Wood Lea Press have sent a gift of two Edward Bawden illustrations from Mallory’s Morte d’Arthur, originally commissioned from the artist for the 1980 Folio Society edition of the text. (In 2005 The Wood Lea Press produced a magnificent and comprehensive volume of Edward Bawden Editioned Prints, which Peter and I thankfully pre-ordered as copies are hard to find now.) Bawden is a great favourite of ours. I don’t have a copy of the Folio Society edition Morte d’Arthur, though I’ve long admired the images from it reproduced in the Wood Lea Press book. These two lino-prints from the artist’s ilustrations for the book were printed by Richard Bawden. I’m over the moon with the gift.
When sir Brian saw that he should be slain, he yielded him to sir Lancelot.
Sir Lancelot was as wild mad as ever was man.
With Morte d’Arthur on my mind today, I’ve excavated the following images from my archive. They were made after I’d greatly enjoyed reading Simon Armitage’s wonderful re-telling of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, a book I’d unreservedly recommend to those interested in narrative poetry, or even just a rattling good yarn.
The three works are studies for paintings not yet made. If I don’t get around to the finished works, I should certainly make some lino-prints of the subject.
Head of Gawain
Head of the Green Knight
The Green Knight