The art of Stella Langdale, 1880–1976


Nocturne (aquatint; no date).

One of Callum‘s recent book postings alerted me to the work of Stella Langdale, an artist and illustrator I hadn’t come across before. Judging from online listings her obscurity would seem to be a result of not having being as productive as some of her contemporaries, and her drawings are a deal more gloomier than the delicate pen-and-ink style that was common in book illustration at the time. But it’s her brooding charcoal masses which I find appealing. As with the better Gustave Doré illustrations, they adumbrate more than they depict by the use of careful composition. Some of her other works are aquatints, a form of etching which allows for similar effects to the graded atmospheres of charcoal.

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