Thursday, 12 July 2012

William Hogarth and William Shakespeare

David Garrick as Richard III by William Hogarth

The depiction of scenes from Shakespeare's plays has been an important part of many British artists repertoire, including William Hogarth (1697-1764).

David Garrick and His Wife
by William Hogarth
Among the artist's works is a portrait of 18th century theatrical actor, manager and writer David Garrick as Richard III. The painting dates from 1745 and is influenced by French baroque. It was followed a few years later, in 1757, by a double portrait of Garrick and his wife, in which Garrick is seated on a chair allegedly constructed of wood from a mulberry tree supposedly planted by Shakespeare himself in the garden of his home in Stratford-upon-Avon, though there is no evidence to suggest that this posthumous tale has any truth in it.

Hogarth also painted a charming and slightly biblical scene from The Tempest, depicting Prospero and Miranda, a love-struck Ferdinand, a web-footed Caliban, and the ethereal Ariel hovering overhead.

The Tempest by William Hogarth

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