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Friday’s Library Snapshot … Eric Gill

August 10, 2012

I cannot begin to do justice to Eric Gill in few short words.

But I will try, and then show a few images that I enjoyed; selected from some of the books we have in the library.

Eric Gill is one of the twentieth century’s most controversial artists. He was a great artist and craftsman; not matched as a letter cutter, wood engraver or typographer.   His life style was scandalous; but it did not distract from his reputation in fact it undoubtedly broadened Gill’s appeal.

Like other modernist works of the early twentieth century his technique was stylised and sexually explicit; a form he used to his advantage; putting him in the front of the avant-garde.

Gill was considered by some to be culturally apart because of his sexual behaviour, adulterous and incestuous relationships. He was also a radical and a social reformer; who pushed out boundaries.

Nonetheless, Gill was able forge working relationships with traditional organisations such as the British Government, the Roman Catholic Church, The Victoria and Albert Museum, the Royal Mint, the Post Office, London Underground and the BBC; although he did often criticise them albeit with a humorous edge.

Well worth further reading if only to unravel some of the complexities and contradictions already highlighted.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. August 10, 2012 10:08 pm

    Very cool … I’d never heard of him.

  2. Eric Williams permalink
    August 11, 2012 3:51 pm

    I cannot agree more with your comments, you have put them in such a way that sums up EG in a very fair way.
    He was controversial, but a great artist in many aspects.

    Eric.

    • August 11, 2012 4:24 pm

      Thanks for the kind feed back … having read about him in various books; it would seem that his genius and good nature out weighed his personal conduct that in some respects was cultural and of the time.

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