Artist: Théodore Gericault (French, Rouen 1791–1824 Paris)

Date: 1818

Medium: Lithograph

Dimensions: Image: 13 15/16 × 16 1/2 in. (35.4 × 41.9 cm)
Sheet: 15 3/16 x 17 11/16 in. (38.5 x 45 cm)

Classification: Prints

Credit Line: Rogers Fund, 1922

Accession Number: 22.63.28


Gericault began to practice lithography—a medium associated with French Romanticism—in 1817, quickly mastering the technique. This image represents the popular English sport of boxing: two muscular combatants, in strikingly similar poses, confront one another. The black-and-white medium is used here to accentuate racial difference through stylized symmetries. In a dynamic and dramatic image, Gericault presents rivalry as a conflict between two male "opposites," with a highly charged space between them.