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The Virtual
Exhibition Website

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History of Art Department
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The eighteenth-century portraitist and history painter, Joshua Reynolds (1723-1792), was President of the Royal Academy of Arts in London from its inception in 1768 until his death. Reynolds was perhaps the most celebrated portraitist of the Georgian era, and was seen by his contemporaries to have transformed portraiture's character and to have dramatically raised its artistic and intellectual ambitions. In many ways, the success of his portraiture was dependent on a thriving market for graphic reproductions of his paintings, which disseminated printed versions of his works to a new, relatively broad urban public for the visual arts.

This exciting virtual exhibition, entitled The Georgian Face: Joshua Reynolds and the Art of Portraiture in Eighteenth-Century England, was complied, curated and designed by a group of second-year undergraduate students in the History of Art Department at the University of York. Having decided to present prints after a selection of Reynolds's most intriguing, engaging and striking paintings in seven distinct thematic galleries - Looking; Looking away, Portraiture and Allegory, The Faces of War, Contemplation, The Painter of Fashion, Childhood and Light and Shadow - the students each chose one image. They then composed illuminating and informative entries, drawing upon their knowledge from having completed the module in Spring Term 2012. Encouraged to think creatively about the character, appeal and function of Reynolds's portraits, and about the relationships articulated between them, they were also actively involved in the appearance of the website, choosing wallpapers, font and layout.

We would love you to explore the different galleries and see for yourself!

Beatrice Bertram, PhD candidate, Lead Curator, The Georgian Face

 

To explore this exhibition please click on 'The Georgian Face' on the navigation bar and select a gallery to browse.

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