About this artwork
While ancient theater has continued to inspire the modern world, satirist James Gillray leaves little doubt as to the caliber of the performers seen here. The Muses of theater, Thalia and Melpomene, are invoked on panels of the dressing room screen along with Cecilia, the patron saint of music, the composer George Frideric Handel, the playwright William Shakespeare, and the actor David Garrick. The fierce Melpomene indeed looks rather like Lady Macbeth, with a dagger and a chalice raised above her head as if to pounce on the amateur theatricals trilling and carousing below.
Currently Off View
- Prints and Drawings
- James Gillray
- Hand-colored etching and aquatint on paper
- 300 × 485 mm (image); 315 × 492 mm (plate); 355 × 540 mm (sheet)
- Gift of Thomas F. Furness in memory of William McCallin McKee