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Sir Joshua Reynolds' reputation today rests principally on his portraits, his theoretical writings on art and his role as President of the Royal Academy. Yet in his own day Reynolds' subject pictures were among the most widely discussed British paintings of the century. This is the first book to concentrate on this important aspect of Reynolds' work. Covering the period from 1760 to 1830, it shows the way in which these pictures were inextricably linked to Reynolds' aims and practices as a painter, and to the way in which he was perceived by his peers.Read more
- First monograph of any kind on Reynolds for a very long time
- Subject pictures (e.g. mythological and biblical subjects) more highly rated in Reynolds's time than portraiture
- Author leading Reynolds expert. Contributing to the large Catalogue Raisonné of Reynolds's work to be published by Yale in 1994
Reviews & endorsements
"The author has conducted exhaustive research in a wide range of historical and literary sources, and he makes particularly good use of the numerous contemporary reviews and commentaries in the public press....Postle's book is a significant addition to Reynold's scholarship....Postle deserves credit for the clarity of his jargon-free prose and the thoroughness of his research which will serve to provides the groundwork for any future study of the development of history painting in Britain." Albion
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- Date Published: February 1995
- format: Hardback
- isbn: 9780521420662
- length: 396 pages
- dimensions: 254 x 196 x 30 mm
- weight: 1.334kg
- contains: 100 b/w illus. 16 colour illus.
- availability: Unavailable - out of print
Table of Contents
1. Several types of ambiguity: historical portraiture and history painting
2. The infant academy
3. 'Patriarchs, Prophets and Saviours': Reynolds as a history painter 1770–1773
4. 'Fashion's fickle claim': high art 1173–1781
5. The labours of Hercules 1782–1789
6. The 'modern Apelles' and the modern Maecenas
7. 'In search of the True Briton'.
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