About this artwork

Best known for his images of birds and other wildlife, in this print Seaby employs a key-block which gives a heavy, dark outline. This is a distinctive characteristic of Seaby’s work of this period. The tight composition focuses on a cockerel, which is leaning forward as though picking up grain from the ground. From amongst the vibrant red of his comb and wattle the cockerel’s beady eye catches the viewer’s attention. In the background two chickens appear to be feasting on a grain stack.

Allen William Seaby

Allen William Seaby

Born in London in 1867, Allen Seaby was a painter, illustrator, colour woodcut artist and writer. He studied at Reading University’s School of Art where, from 1920-33, he was Professor of Fine Art. He illustrated and wrote a number of books during his career including: ‘Art in the Life of Mankind’, 1928-31, and ‘Colour Printing with Linoleum and Wood Blocks’, 1928. He also travelled widely in Scotland when he was working on the plates for a book on British birds, from 1910-13. Seaby was an influential exponent of the colour woodcut method with his subjects including birds, animals, and scenes from both the United Kingdom and Europe.

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