Shakespeare Gallery

The Romantic Illustration Network Shakespeare Gallery

The Romantic Illustration Network would like to express its gratitude to Professor Fred Burwick, who provided us with the negatives for the high-resolution digital images of the engravings displayed below.

The Boydell Shakespeare Gallery, 1789-1805

An exhibition of paintings devoted exclusively to scenes from the dramatic works of Shakespeare was opened to the London populace in June, 1789. The Shakespeare Gallery was situated in a huge building at 52 Pall Mall. Formerly occupied by Dodsley’s bookshop, the building had been rebuilt under the supervision of George Dance the younger. The exterior was sheathed in copper; the entrance featured a relief of Shakespeare reclining against a rock, with the Dramatic Muse to his right and the Genius of Painting to his left. The exhibition suite on the ground floor was 130 feet long; the three rooms upstairs provided a wall area of over 4,000 square feet for exhibiting the paintings. Obviously there was room for many more than the thirty-four paintings which were displayed for the first visitors. The number of paintings doubled the ensuing year, and each spring an exhibition of newly completed paintings was announced, so that the Shakespeare Gallery, before it finally closed in 1805, eventually housed 167 canvases by thirty-three artists.

[Excerpt from the Introduction to The Boydell Shakespeare Gallery, by Frederick Burwick]

Click on the thumbnails below to access larger versions of the images, and to view the full-sized image. Images are arranged alphabetically by play, and new plays will be added over the coming months, so do keep checking back here.

Mary L. Shannon

Dustin Frazier Wood

Creative Commons Licence
The Romantic Illustration Network Shakespeare Gallery by Frederick Burwick and the Romantic Illustration Network is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. Digitised by the University of Roehampton.

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Front Matter to the Boydells’ two-volume Collection of Prints


Antony and Cleopatra


 

 As You Like It


Comedy of Errors


Coriolanus


Cymbeline


Hamlet


Julius Caesar


 

King Henry the Fourth, Part I


King Henry the Fourth, Part II


King Henry the Fifth


King Henry the Sixth, Part I


 

King Henry the Sixth, Part II


 

King Henry the Sixth, Part III


 

King Henry the Eighth


 

King Lear


 

King Richard the Third


 

Measure for Measure


Merchant of Venice


Merry Wives of Windsor


Much Ado About Nothing


Othello


 

Romeo and Juliet


 

 

Taming of the Shrew


The Tempest


Timon of Athens


 

 

Titus Andronicus


 

 

Troilus & Cressida


 

Two Gentlemen of Verona


Recent Posts

Lewis Walpole Library Masterclass

The Lewis Walpole Library is now accepting applications for its residential masterclass,  A Contest of Two Genres: Graphic Satire and Anglo-American History Painting in the Long Eighteenth Century.

The residential course will be led by Mark Salber Phillips (Carleton University) and Cynthia Roman (Lewis Walpole Library), and will take place 15-18 May.

According to the Lewis Walpole Library website:

Centuries-old hierarchies of the visual arts have placed history painting and graphic satire at opposite ends of the spectrum. “History painting” – high minded narrative art depicting exemplary heroes and events— carried enormous prestige, bringing fame to the individual artist as well as to the national school. In contrast, graphic satire was viewed as the lowest form of visual expression – more closely connected to political prints than to high-minded “histories.”

This residential seminar is intended to give doctoral students in a variety of disciplines the opportunity to consider issues and overlaps between these two narrative genres. Making use of visual material and textual resources from the collections of the Lewis Walpole Library’s at Yale, we will examine the often-embattled efforts of artists to construct new modes of visual representation as well as of narrative and history.  Through a multidisciplinary approach, we  will take note of a variety of key issues, including the theoretical context of Enlightenment intellectual history, the more focused discourse of art treatises, and direct encounters with the formal and aesthetic qualities of works of art. Among history painters we will give our attention to the works of William Hogarth, Gavin Hamilton, Benjamin West, and John Trumbull, while among the satirists we will focus on James Gillray, Thomas Rowlandson, and Isaac and George Cruikshank.

The class will be taught as a combination of seminars, small group discussions, and visits to the Yale Center for British Art, the Yale University Art Gallery, and the Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art. Most of the teaching will take place in the Lewis Walpole Library in Farmington.

Places are limited, and (post)graduate students are encouraged to apply by submitting a short statement of interest here. Transportation will be available to and from New Haven, and accommodation may be available on-site upon request.

 

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