Exhibition | Hogarth’s Britons

Posted in exhibitions by Editor on April 18, 2023

Now on view in Derby:

Hogarth’s Britons: Succession, Patriotism, and the Jacobite Rebellion
Derby Museum & Art Gallery, 10 March — 4 June 2023

Curated by Jacqueline Riding and Lucy Bamford

William Hogarth, The March of the Guards to Finchley, 1749–50, oil on canvas (London: The Foundling Museum).

No other artist defines our image of 18th-century Britain quite like William Hogarth. His vibrant narrative paintings, reproduced and circulated widely through print, engaged with some of the most pressing social and political issues of the times. Amongst these was Jacobitism, a campaign to restore the exiled Stuart dynasty to the throne of Great Britain. This exhibition explores Hogarth’s response to this threat, including the last and most serious of all attempts: the Jacobite Rebellion of 1745. Led by Prince Charles Edward Stuart (‘Bonnie Prince Charlie’) with support from France, the Jacobite Army would eventually reach Derby before retreating back north to Scotland and defeat at the Battle of Culloden.

Led by Derby Museums, Hogarth’s Britons has been produced in partnership with the National Gallery and the National Portrait Gallery and is the first exhibition of Hogarth’s works to be staged in Derby. It brings many pieces that have never before been seen in the city, including Hogarth’s masterpiece, The March of the Guards to Finchley (Foundling Museum, London). Others, such as the newly discovered portrait of the Prince by Allan Ramsay (National Galleries of Scotland), will be returning to Derby for the first time since the rebellion of 1745. The exhibition also brings together items from national and private collections, representing local divided loyalties and the experience of life under Jacobite-army occupation.

Hogarth’s Britons: Succession, Patriotism, and the Jacobite Rebellion is co-curated by Jacqueline Riding, acclaimed art historian and author of Jacobites (2016) and Hogarth: Life in Progress (2021); and Lucy Bamford, Senior Curator of Art at Derby Museums.

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