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1729 Dublin – 1765 London


Madness – 1760


Mezzotint on laid watermarked paper. Size of sheet: 39.5 x 25 cm. Lettered: ‘Madness//R.Pine pinxt.//Js McArdell fecit.// Publish’d according to Act of Parliamt. May 30th 1760’.


Goodwin 1903, British Mezzotinters: James McArdell (203); Chaloner Smith 1883/British Mezzotinto portraits from the introduction of the art to the early part of the present century (196).


Wonderful velvety early impression with large margins of this sought-after print on laid watermarked paper. The print is after Robert Edge Pine’s painting “A Madwoman”, which was shown at the exhibition of the Society of Artists in 1760.


Comparative Impressions: The British Museum - inv.2010,7081.2743.



James McArdell: Madness

  • McArdell was called the founder of the great school of mezzotint engravers of the 18th century in England. In 1746 he moved to London from Dublin to pursue his profession. In his short career he raised the art of mezzotinter to a perfection never before attained in England.

    McArdell worked with the best-regarded artists of his day, such as Sir Joshua Reynolds. “By this man I shall be immortalized’, said Sir Joshua marvelling at the talent of James McArdell, who in total engraved 38 portraits after Reynolds.

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