About this artwork

The nude young man holds out a large comic mask in both hands. Its large laughing mouth frames the youth's head when the sculpture is viewed from the left. However, his body twists towards the right and the expression on his own face reveals a surprising contrast to the comic mask as he grimaces in pain. He has apparently been stung by a bee. The half-mask which he wears like a head band emphasises the tragic face. The figure was inspired by the play 'Comedy and Tragedy' by W.S.Gilbert (1836-1911) which the sculptor saw at the Lyceum Theatre, London.

  • title:
    Comedy and Tragedy
  • accession number:
    NG 2287
  • artist:
  • gallery:
  • object type:
  • materials:
    Bronze
  • date created:
    1891 - 1892
  • measurements:
    Height: 83 x 30 x 30 cm
  • credit line:
    Sir Alexander Maitland Bequest 1965

Alfred Gilbert

Alfred Gilbert