Angelica Kauffmann (1741-1807): An Artist in 18th Century England

This lecture will attempt to revive the reputation and celebrate a great artist that, although born in Switzerland, went on to become a great British Neo-Classical artist, with a reputation equal to her male contemporaries in an age that rarely recognised women in this field.

This lecture will not only look at her training and early paintings, but also the influence on Kauffman of Italian painting and the great Renaissance masters, not to mention Dutch painting.  The lecture will also chart Kauffman’s rise to fame on the Continent, along with her association with the most famous figures of the age including Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749 –1832) and Joshua Reynolds (1723-1792) to name but a few.

The lecture will also look at Kauffmann’s controversial private life, her arrival in England and subsequent success in a relatively short period of time, and what happened to Kauffmann after leaving England.

Thorough the use of existing documentary evidence gained from the National Portrait Gallery’s Heinz Archive the lecture will not only chart the rise of Kauffman, but also look at how her work was received by the critics of her day and beyond.

Short reading list:

Roworth, Wendy Wassyng: Angelica Kauffman: A Continental Artist in Georgian England (Reaktion Books, 1992)

Natter, Tobias (ed). Angelica Kauffman: A Woman of Immense Talent (Ostfildern: Hatje-Cantz, 2007)


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19/11/2010 – ©Leslie Primo