Who was William Blake?

William Blake English poet, painter, engraver, artistic and social visionary, Blake was one of the most expansive, versatile and undervalued artists of the early Romantic age. Born in London in 1757, Blake lived there in relative poverty and obscurity for all but 3 of his 70 years, although his imagination touched the world, the past and the future. He was apprenticed to an en­graver as a boy of 14 and remained a print-maker all his life. His own art developed out of the engraving process: he engraved his fantastic drawings on copper plates then watercolored the prints by hand, sometimes redoing a series several times over in deepening colors. In this manner Blake illustrated and issued all of his poems, which were allegorical, mythological and extraordinarily prescient of 20th-century psychological and social concerns: alienation, suspen­sion of sensibility in favor of rationalism, industrial violence and political repression were all interwoven in his sometimes apocalyptic, sometimes optimistic visions.

William Blake