is one of many works executed by the London-based artist Leon Kossoff in response to Old Master paintings
, in this case The Judgement of Solomon, 1649, by Nicolas Poussin (1594–1665) in the Musée du Louvre, Paris. Tate owns two further prints by Kossoff after this Poussin painting (P11698–9). Originally printed in an edition
of twenty with ten artist’s proofs, P20301 is a later and heavily reworked state of the editioned artist’s proof. This work is from a group of thirty-four unique and proof impressions of prints given to Tate by the artist in 2007. Kossoff collaborated with Ann Dowker on the production of the prints.
In his painting of the Old Testament story, Poussin placed Solomon on a throne at the centre of a pyramidal composition. The figure of the king is framed by a circular plinth, on which his throne stands, and two round pillars, one to either side of him. On either side of the throne, the gesturing women who each claim a baby as their own, plead their cases. Kossoff’s etching follows the stark composition of Poussin’s painting, but the scene is dynamically drawn with energetic vertical and horizontal lines…