In 1786, publisher John Boydell (1719-1804) forged a plan to publish an edition of Shakespeare's plays with illustrations by the top artists of the day. Boydell's goal was to establish an English School of historical painting. He began soliciting subscribers and commissioning paintings, and in 1789, he opened the Shakespeare Gallery to display the artworks. Subscribers received free tickets to the exhibition, and the gallery in London's Pall Mall soon became a place to see and be seen.The exhibition opened with thirty-four paintings, and by 1791 it had grown to seventy-two. An in-house team of printmakers created engravings from the paintings, available for purchase. A nine-volume folio edition was published in 1802, and in 1803, Boydell printed the two-volume elephant folios of all the engravings, selections from which appear in this colouring book.
Boydell was forced to close the gallery when the French Revolution cut off the export market for his books, prints, and engravings, but his efforts had lasting effects on English painting. Artists were now paid to create history paintings, a break from their custom of mainly painting portraits for the wealthy.
Thoughtfully conceived and engagingly intricate, This coloring book combines stunning illustrations, high-quality paper, and sturdy construction to delight generations of coloring enthusiasts.
- Hardcover: 108 pages
- 8.6 x 0.5 x 11"
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