This painting is inspired by the last scene from William Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream
, where Titania instructs her fairies with the lines ‘Hand in Hand, with fairy grace, / Will we sing, and bless this place.’ Oberon and Titania, King and Queen of the fairies, are on the left, with Puck shown dancing next to them. On the right, the fairies Peaseblossom, Moth, Cobweb, Mustardseed dance in a ring.
Oberon, Titania and Puck with Fairies Dancing
47.5 x 67.5 cm
Pencil and watercolour
Date of work
Original: Pencil and Watercolour 47.5 x 67.5 cm ® Tate, London
William Blake (1757 – 1827) was an English poet and artist. Blake trained as an engraver and had a career in etching, engraving and illustration. Although he exhibited his watercolours at the Academy from 1780 he railed against academic art, insisting instead on individual inspiration. His own style was influenced by Gothic sculpture and Michelangelo’s figures. Although he received little public recognition in his lifetime, he has since been hailed as one of Britain’s greatest artists, and celebrated for his anti-slavery and pro-equality views.