Rowlandson's Human Comedy
A Biography of the Regency Artist
- Stephen Wade
15th April 2011
Thomas Rowlandson was one of the most productive and influential artists of Britain's Regency years. He worked hard and enjoyed the company of friends and fellow artists, and his client base was immense. His caricatures and satires of contemporary society have in many ways defined our iconic images of that exciting and dangerous society in which the Romantic Movement was formed and a war with Napoleon's France fought. Yet we still know very little about this enigmatic man who was exceptionally gifted in a range of visual arts. Rowlandson's Human Comedy: A Biography of the Regency Artist sets out to enquire into the 'hidden life' of this genial and talented man, whose works are avidly collected across the world and are widely admired by artists and historians alike. His imaginative powers of satirical insight at once revealed and betrayed the Georgian's extremes of violence and affection, robust play and sensual appetite for life. Stephen Wade sets out to reveal the social context in which Rowlandson worked and to dig deeper into the nature and experiences of an artist whose work has permeated the media, literature and publishing since his death, as his images have reached into all areas of cultural history. Here the reader will also find accounts of collaborators working with 'Rolly' such as Pugin, Combe and Wigstead.