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Monumental Head

John Wilson (American, 1922–2015), Printed by James Stroud (American, born in 1958), Published by Center Street Studio, Milton, MA


Sheet: 109.2 x 90.2 cm (43 x 35 1/2 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Lift-ground etching and aquatint with chine-collé

Not On View



This etching, like the etched portrait of Martin Luther King, Jr. on the opposite wall, was produced in collaboration with printer James Stroud at Center Street Studio. The boldly drawn profile reprises a composition from 1972 that relates to Wilson’s Eternal Presence sculpture. Echoes of the work of Fernand Léger, with whom Wilson studied in the late 1940s, remain in the flat abstract patterns of the background—sumptuous fields of tone that rhythmically alternate with unprinted areas, where the warm Japanese paper shows through.


In graphite, l.l.: 34/50; b.c.: Monumental Head; l.r.: Wilson 03


Printer and publisher James Stroud, Center Street Studio, Milton, MA; 2016, sold by James Stroud to the MFA. (Accession date: September 28, 2016)

Credit Line

The Heritage Fund for a Diverse Collection