By William Shakespeare. Illustrated by Chris Ofili. Introduction by Fred Moten
Othello remains one of Shakespeare’s most contemporary and moving plays, with its emphasis on race, revenge, murder, and lost love. Chris Ofili’s new edition highlights the tragedy of Othello’s plight in ways no other volume of this play has.
In the twelve etchings Ofili has produced to illustrate this play, Othello is depicted with tears in his eyes, which flow below various scenes visualized in his forehead. Ofili asks us to see in Othello the great injustices that still plague the world today. These images add feeling to Shakespeare’s words, and together they form their own hybrid object—something between a book and a visual retelling of the tragedy. With a foreword by the renowned critic Fred Moten, this edition is the first of its kind and puts Othello’s blackness and interiority front and center, forcing us to confront the complex world that ultimately dooms him.
Listen to an epic live episode of Dialogues. In journeying deep into Homer’s Odyssey in front of an audience at the 69th Street gallery in New York, artist Chris Ofili and classicist Emily Wilson encounter religion, art, personal history, gender issues, Trinidad, Greece, truth, and lies.