Alexander Cozens and a pupil
A Blot, Based on New Method, Plate 10. Verso: A Clumsier Blot date not known

Artwork details

Alexander Cozens 1717–1786 and a pupil
A Blot, Based on New Method, Plate 10. Verso: A Clumsier Blot
Date Date not known
Medium Ink on paper. Verso: ink on paper
Dimensions Support: 480 x 382 mm
frame (Imperial): 725 x 550 x 25 mm
Acquisition Purchased as part of the Oppé Collection with assistance from the National Lottery through the Heritage Lottery Fund 1996
View this artwork by appointment, at Tate Britain's Prints and Drawings Rooms

Display caption

Cozens published a drawing manual called A New Method of Assisting the Invention... of Landscape in 1786, which demonstrated one of his schemes for inventing landscape compositions. He recommended the use of the chance associations which semi-randomly applied 'blots' of ink would produce in the mind to create new compositions. When making a blot, Cozens wrote, 'you must first possess your mind strongly with the subject'. Here Cozens or a pupil has used a large brush loaded with dense black ink, working quickly to lay down the main forms, and using overlapping dabs of ink to complete the image.

August 2004

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