John Edgar Platt, (English, 1886-1967)
The Jetty, Sennen Cove
Color woodblock print. Signed in pencil at lower right, John Platt. Numbered and titled at left, 59/100 THE JETTY, SENNEN COVE. Self-carved and self-printed by the artist, from a projected edition of 100 (126 recorded, some numbered out of 150), ca. December 1921.
31.6 by 25.5 cm
Holme, Geoffrey, ed., Modern Woodcuts and Lithographs by British and French Artists, 1919, p. 32
Chapman, A Catalogue of the Colour Woodcuts of John Edgar Platt, 1999, p. 22, no 8, color illus. p. 28
As a student, John Edgar Platt intended to study engineering at Manchester University, but while recuperating from a minor accident he briefly attended Margate Art School in Kent where a tutor recognized his drawing skills and convinced him to transfer to architecture. This half step towards a more creative profession eventually led Platt to seek a career in the arts. He attended Newcastle, Margate and Leek schools of art before being awarded a scholarship in 1905 to the Royal College of Art in London where he won prizes in design, painting, architecture and modeling. His interests were quite broad and he paid particular attention to the production of decorative arts, studying a great variety of crafts including stained glass, tapestries, books, posters, metalwork, jewelry, and woodcarving.
In 1910 Platt took a teaching position at Leek College of Art, which he managed while keeping up with mural and industrial design commissions and starting a family. He served in the First World War from 1914-1918, and upon his return took short-term positions at the Harrogate and Derby School of Arts. From 1920-23 he was the part-time head of the Department of Applied Art at Edinburgh College of Art, where Mabel A. Royds (cat. nos. 26-28) was also teaching and Frank Morley Fletcher (1866-1949) was the Director. Platt had learned woodblock printmaking from Allan Seaby (1867-1953), a student of Morley Fletcher's. Fletcher was impressed enough with Platt to write an article for The Studio magazine, The Work of John Platt, published in 1925.
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