Mother Hubbard’s Dog’ is an exquisite example of Charles Blackman’s mastery over the graphic practice. It is a rare dry-point etching from Blackmans beloved Mother Goose series, printed in collaboration with printer Satish Sharma and Charles’s son Auguste Blackman at Well House Press Studio in Paddington, Sydney in 1977.
Well House Press Studio took its name from a convict-built well on the Blackman’s property. It was the setting for some of Blackmans boldest printmaking experiments, not least of which were the Mother Goose works. Auguste gives insight into creating the series, reflecting:
“We devised a way of Charles working directly onto sheets of laser cut perspex. No one has attempted this before as the artist has to have immense confidence, a very strong hand and a will of iron to etch directly onto the perspex sheet. The stylus does not want to make a curved line due to the nature of the way the Perspex is made… Plexiglass or Perspex determined the low edition of 20 only as the plates were delicate and we could only extract a certain amount of passes under the roller before the drypoint etch flattened out!“
Not only technically difficult, ‘Mother Hubbard’s Dog’ is visually engrossing. In it, Blackman captures Mother Hubbard checking the pantry for a bone. As the keen storyteller he is, the artist has distilled the nursery rhyme’s central tension into a frame. An evocation of the role mothers and stories play in our lives, as well as witty delight in and of itself, ‘Mother Hubbard’s Dog’ is a bottle green delight.
Master print Satish Sharma described working with Blackman as “magicians leading each other from madness to madness” and etching as “like a man-eating tiger - once it gets hold of you it wont let go. This emboldened ferocity emanates from ‘Mother Hubbard’s Dog’. Rare to market this museum-quality work is a tale your whole family can treasure.
Charles BLACKMAN (1928 - 2018)
'Mother Hubbard's Dog' 1977
Etching on paper
Edition of 20
Image Size: 40 x 50 cm
Dimensions: 60 x 70 cm
Signed: Signed Charles Blackman in margin, titled, and numbered
Comes with Letter of Provenance
Availability: in stock
© Charles Blackman / Copyright Agency 2020
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