Iconic Images: Guinevere and Arthur


Rudolph (Rudy) Valentino Bostic (American, 1941-2021).
King Arthur. Acrylic on cardboard.

Like many self-taught painters, Savannah, Georgia, artist Bostic used inexpensive materials that were readily available to him—in his case, the cardboard boxes he brought home from the bakery where he worked. The most common subjects of his vibrant, colorful paintings were biblical stories, but he sometimes illustrated other images and themes, especially from popular and African-American culture, as well.


Nuremberg Chronicle (1493). An original page
depicting “Arturus Rex” (“Arthur the King”).

One of the best documented incunabula (early printed books) and one of the most successful early works to integrate illustrations and text, the Nuremburg Chronicle is a pictorial universal history of the world, comprising biblical and historical events.


Francis Kirn (American, 1904-1972). King Arthur. A watercolor painting with the caption “Holding his sword on high, Arthur repeated the vow in a ringing voice.”

A Chicago-based artist, Kirn illustrated many children’s and nursery-rhyme books. Author of his own children’s book called Christmas in Tangletown, he is also remembered for his comic “Uncle Wiggly,” which ran in newspapers from 1948 until 1953.


Sir George Hayter (British, 1792-1871). Queen Guinevere.
An original watercolor (dated 1840).

Originally a miniaturist who trained under his father, the artist Charles Hayter, George Hayter became a skilled printmaker and painter specializing in portraits and large works. In 1837, Hayter was appointed Queen Victoria’s “Principal Painter in Ordinary” and was later awarded a Knighthood (1841).


J. [Henry Justice] Ford (British, 1860-1941).
Arthur and Guenevere Kiss Before All the People.
An original pen-and-ink drawing signed by the artist.

A prolific artist and illustrator, Ford came to public attention with his illustrations for Andrew Lang’s Fairy Books (the first two of which were completed in conjunction with artist Lancelot Speed).

All text for Visualizing Camelot © by Alan Lupack and Barbara Tepa Lupack, 2023-2024.