Art: Ensor As Etcher

Etching has all the bravura of needlepoint. It helps to be a recluse to master etching. One who was, and did, is James Sydney Ensor, Belgium's premier fantasist of the 20th century, who spent only three of his 89 years of life away from the seaport town of Ostend.

Ensor is, of course, better known for his paintings. His great oil, The Entry of Christ into Brussels in 1889, painted in 1888, measured 8½ ft. by 14 ft., but he explored the same theme in etchings the size of a shirt cardboard. During his life,...

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