MAURITS CORNELIS ESCHER: WINGED LION NO. 66

Three-dimensional, minimum, two colors: yellow and black.

By Balthzar Malevolent

MAURITS CORNELIS ESCHER: WINGED LION NO. 66

DRAWING 66 [WINGED LION]

Baarn, October 1945

Ink and watercolor

Related graphic work: Magic Mirror, January 1945.

Although Schattschneider describes this as a ‘winged lion’ (possibly influenced by Escher's description of a similar head of Drawing 2), this is somewhat stretched. As such, I would prefer ‘winged dog-like’ (albeit admittedly with a long, unlike dog neck) as a more precise description.

A possible indication as to how highly Escher rated this is that he chose this in 1959 for the front cover of The Graphic Work of M.C. Escher (shown on page 276 of Visions of Symmetry), of which by that date he had just over 100 drawings to choose from for that purpose.

Tessellation - Winged Lion No 66 by MC Escher.

Magic Mirror is a lithograph print by the Dutch artist M. C. Escher first printed in January, 1946.

It depicts a mirror standing vertically on wooden supports on a tiled surface. The perspective is looking down at an angle at the right hand side of the mirror. There is a sphere at each side of the mirror. The main focus of the image is a procession of small griffin (winged lion) sculptures that emerge from the surface of the mirror and trail away from it in single file. Both the angular reflection of the tiles and the offset between the reflection of the sphere in front of the mirror and the sphere behind it prove it is a mirror. Yet the reflection of the griffin procession continues to emerge from behind the mirror. The griffin processions of both sides loop around to the front and enter a tessellated pattern on the tile surface.

Magic Mirror, 1946.

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