Fra Angelico’s Conversion of Saint Augustine (1430–5); Botticelli’s illustrations to Dante, of which ninety-two ethereal drawings on sheepskin survive; Sir John Tenniel’s plates for Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland (1865) and Through the Looking Glass and What Alice Found There (1871) – all three were moments in literary history where text and illustrator were perfectly matched. Not all literary works become illustration well; Shakespeare, for example – and perhaps remarkably – has found no definitive realisations with the possible exception of Millais’ Ophelia (1852). Maybe a genius up to the task hasn’t arisen yet; maybe it’s because plays, unlike biography, poetry or prose, find their own illustrations on the stage; or maybe Shakespeare’s works have simply grown to surpass the kind of containment concomitant with depiction.


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The Soho Revue is a monthly arts magazine which covers art, culture, food and architecture, with a focus on London's beating heart: Soho and its environs. It is associated with the Revue Gallery, which exhibits the work of promising contemporary artists.