Wednesday, June 10, 2015

William Hogarth (1697-1764) paints Conversation Pieces in Parks & Gardens throughout the English Countryside

1730 William Hogarth, (English artist, 1697-1764)  The Jones Conversation Piece

A Conversation Piece is a small informal group portrait popular from the 18C, often showing people – sometimes families, sometimes groups of friends – often interacting in outdoor, garden settings.

1738 William Hogarth, (English artist, 1697-1764) The Hervey Converstion Piece The Holland House Group

Conversation Pieces usually portrayed a group apparently engaged in some informal genteel conversation or some family activity. Typically the portrait group were members of a family, but friends could be included; and sometimes, deceased relatives also re-appeared.

William Hogarth (1697-1764) Woodes Rogers (c.1679–1732) and his Family

The settings of Conversation Pieces reflected the image the client wanted to portray, including the ideal landscape or formal garden, which he wanted to depict as the settings for his everyday activities. And so, these Conversation Pieces are a great way to see what those in the early 18C aspired to have in their planned, personal landscapes.

William Hogarth (1697-1764) A House of Cards

The subjects of Conversation Pieces were depicted in a variety of genteel pastimes, whether or not they really could do the activities they were portrayed enjoying.  People were painted sharing common activities such as hunts, meals, fishing, or musical parties. Dogs & horses were also frequently included as proper gentry accessories.

1731 William Hogarth, (English artist, 1697-1764) Ashley Cowper with his Wife and Daughter

1742 William Hogarth, (English artist, 1697-1764) and George Lambert (English artist, 1700-1765) Family in the Garden at 
Chiswick House 

 William Hogarth (1697-1764) A Children's Tea Party 1730

 William Hogarth (1697-1764) A Fishing Party

 William Hogarth (1697-1764) John and Elizabeth Jeffreys and Their Children c 1730

William Hogarth (1697-1764) The Edwards-Hamilton Family on their Terrace in Kensington

William Hogarth (1697-1764) The Mackinen Children. 1747

William Hogarth (1697-1764) The Fountaine Family