Edmund Joseph Sullivan

Edmund Joseph Sullivan

Edmund Joseph Sullivan

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Edmund Joseph Sullivan (1869-1933), usually known as E. J. Sullivan, was a British book illustrator who worked in a style which merged the British tradition of illustration from the 1860s with aspects of Art Nouveau.

Sullivan was the son of an artist. He, however, decided to concentrate on the emerging field of graphic design and book illustration, which was flourishing at the end of the nineteenth century. Sullivan worked at the Daily Graphic from the age of nineteen, moving to the Pall Mall Magazine in 1893. During this period he produced standard news and portrait illustrations, but began to work on illustrations to literature at the Magazine. He soon graduated to the more prestigious role of book illustrator, producing illustrations for editions of Lavengro and the plays School for Scandal and The Rivals. Sullivan's style is comparable to that of Aubrey Beardsley, but is more romantic than Beardley's acerbic manner.

He also illustrated The Compleat Angler and Tom Brown's Schooldays. By the end of the decade Sullivan's designs were in high demand, leading to the publication of his most ambitious work, an illustrated edition of Thomas Carlyle's Sartor Resartus, published in 1898. This contains ranging from emblems to full page pictures. Sullivan adapted his style to use the faux-Rococo techniques he had developed in his play-illustrations in order to combine them with bizarre images of strange fantastical figures, drawing on the genre of the grotesque. Sullivan later also...
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