Thursday, November 26, 2015

European paintings at the Ashmolean Museum, 18th century

Johann Zoffany
Portrait of David Garrick
early 1760s
Ashmolean Museum, Oxford

From the curator's notes provided by the Ashmolean Museum for the portrait above  "The celebrated actor David Garrick (1717-1779) bought out the young German artist Zoffany from his apprenticeship with Benjamin Wilson in 1762 and became one of his most consistent patrons. Most of Zoffany's portraits of Garrick show him either in character on the stage or in conversation pieces. Here he is seen in an informal pose without his wig, but with the traditional device of masks of Comedy and Tragedy."   

Like the other Ashmolean grab-bags we have been looking into, the paintings from the 18th century seem like miscellaneous curiosities, brought together by chance. Studied one by one, nevertheless, each begins to yield its own surprises kept concealed from hasty viewers.

Claude-Joseph Vernet
Coastal Scene
Ashmolean Museum, Oxford

Giambattista Tiepolo
Woman with Macaw 
Ashmolean Museum, Oxford

George Romney
Mrs. Siddons
Ashmolean Museum, Oxford

Joshua Reynolds
James Paine, Architect, and his son, James
Ashmolean Museum, Oxford

Allan Ramsay
Flora Macdonald
Ashmolean Museum, Oxford

Jan van Os
Still Life with Flowers & Fruit
18th century
Ashmolean Museum, Oxford

Anton Raphael Mengs
William Fermor on the Grand Tour
Ashmolean Museum, Oxford

Thomas Lawrence
Francis Osborne, 5th Duke of Leeds
Ashmolean Museum, Oxford

William Hoare
Portrait Study of the Countess of Ashburnham 
ca. 1775
Ashmolean Museum, Oxford

Thomas Jones
Rooftops in Naples
Ashmolean Museum, Oxford

circle of Francesco Guardi
Capriccio with Ruins & Bridge
18th century
Ashmolean Museum, Oxford