New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1995. Photographs by & about Wm Blake. First American Edition. Cloth and boards. 8vo, black quarter cloth with gold spine lettering over apricot boards, profusely illustrated with 33 full color & 30 B&W glossy plates with many in-text B&W illustrations, Mylar-protected pictorial dust jacket (unclipped) with several images of and by Blake, 399 pages. Very Fine / Very Fine. Item #1980
A major biography of William Blake (1757-1827) by brilliant Peter Ackroyd in EXCEPTIONAL COLLECTIBLE CONDITION!
Born in 1757, William Blake -- poet, painter, and engraver -- was one of the most original and fertile artistic geniuses of his age. Yet his supposed supernatural visions caused many to question his sanity, and much of his distinctive poetry and cryptic visual art remains unfamiliar. Now, Peter Ackroyd's biography clarifies the true nature of Blake's extraordinary life and art. We follow Blake's creativity from his childhood in a Dissenting household and his exposure to Swedenborgian Christian mysticism, through his apprenticeship as an engraver and brief studies at the new Royal Academy Schools, to his maturity, during which he produced such masterpieces as: "Songs of Innocence and Experience," "Jerusalem," and "Milton"--many plates being illustrated. The author places Blake in the context of 18th-century London inflamed by various forms of dissent, radicalism, amd mysticism. But Ackroyd also shows us the cockney visionary as the creator of his own richly symbolic interior world as expressed in Blake's unique engravings.
Peter Ackroyd, CBE, FRSL (born 1949) is an English biographer, novelist and critic with a particular interest in the history and culture of London. For his novels about English history and culture and his biographies of, among others, William Blake, Charles Dickens, T. S. Eliot and Sir Thomas More, he won the Somerset Maugham Award and two Whitbread Awards. He is noted for the volume of work he has produced, the range of styles therein, his skill at assuming different voices and the depth of his research.
He was elected a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature in 1984 and appointed a Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 2003.--Wikipedia.