Special Lecture: Summer (Trinity) 2014

"Blake's Illustrations of the Book of Job: A Treasure in Trinity"

Jonathan Downing

Blake's "Illustrations for the Book of Job" (1825) stand as Blake's final completed artistic commission before his death the following year. They also represent an idiosyncratic, yet extremely perspective interpretation of the biblical text through a sequence of 21 beautifully rendered intaglio-line engravings. The prints garnered Blake great fame after his death, with John Ruskin describing the engravings as "of the highest rank in certain characters of imagination and expression". Until 2012 we at Trinity had no idea that we had a collection of the engravings in the Danson Library collection. Their discovery, however, has prompted a wave of enquiry about their provenance and the story of how they came to Trinity in the first place. This talk will provide an opportunity to explore the unique ways in which Blake illustrated and interpreted the biblical text, and also a chance to see the plates and to hear the story of their journey to Trinity. Lecture takes place on Monday 20th May at 5:30pm* in The Danson Room, Trinity College, Oxford (*Please note the different time, compared to our usual seminars)

Convenor: Dr Christine Joynes