18th Century - The Courtauld Institute of Art

18th Century

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18th Century

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The 18th century collection features fine examples of English portraiture, including Gainsborough’s mesmerising portrait of his wife and the only full-length portrait by Goya in Britain. One area of the gallery is devoted to an extraordinary collection of oil sketches by the last great Venetian painter, Tiepolo.

 

Highlights from the collection

A Portrait of Mrs Gainsborough

by Thomas Gainsborough (1779)

This portrait is striking for its suggestion of intimacy between painter and sitter; Mrs Gainsborough is shown with her body and face pointing straight towards the viewer, her eyes meeting our gaze directly, her lips slightly curved into what may be a smile, but which also suggests resignation.

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Don Francisco de Saavedra

by Francisco de Goya (1798)

The Spanish politician Francisco de Saavedra was noted for his integrity. In late 1798 Saavedra and his great friend and ally, Gaspar de Jovellanos, were appointed to the two highest political offices in Spain: Minister of Finance and Minister of State.

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