Postle, Martin: Johan Zoffany RA - Society Observed

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Catalogue No: 9780300176049
Johan Zoffany RA - Society Observed

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Department: Biographies & Reference Books - Books & Literature (Classical)

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The 18th-century painter Johan Zoffany (1733-1810) was an astute observer of the many social circles in which he functioned as an artist over the course of his long career. This catalogue investigates his sharp wit, shrewd political appraisal, and perceptive social commentary (including subtle allusions to illicit relationships) - all achieved while presenting his subjects as delightful and sophisticated members of polite society.

A skilled networker, Zoffany established himself at the court of George III and Queen Charlotte soon after his arrival in England from his native Germany. At the same time, he befriended the leading actor David Garrick and through him became the foremost portrayer of Georgian theatre. His brilliant effects and deft style were well suited to theatricality of all sorts, enabling him to secure patronage in England and on the continent. Following a prolonged visit to Italy he travelled to India, where he quickly became a popular and established member within the circle of Warren Hastings, the governor-general. Zoffany's Indian paintings are among his most spectacular and allowed him to return to England enriched and warmly welcomed. This volume provides a sparkling overview of his finest works.

More about this title:
This book accompanies the exhibition Johan Zoffany RA: Society Observed (Thursday, October 27, 2011–Sunday, February 12, 2012) at the Yale Center for British Art.

Martin Postle is assistant director for academic activities at the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art. He was formerly a curator at Tate Britain.

Publication date:21 Oct 2011
Dimensions:320 pages: 292 x 241 x 27mm
Illustrations:225 colour images + 5 black-&-white illustrations


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