Archive for February 21st, 2007

Hogarth

February 21, 2007

To London and a visit to the Tate Britain for the wonderful William Hogarth exhibition. I can’t rate this highly enough: a lost world of harlots, rakes, gambling aristocrats and corrupt politicians is brought to life. The depth of characterisation in each of his pictures and the many layers of storytelling taking place is breathtaking. Satirist, artist and engraver: who can fault a man who comes up with characters such as Moll Hackabout and the Rape Master General and often sets his scenes in the mythical town of Guzzledown. His work was, in his own words, partly a moral crusade to establish ‘modern’, urban life – including lowlife – as an appropriate subject for art. This left me wondering, where are today’s Hogarths – satirising our modern life through great works of art?