Reynolds and his Circle: Weekend Art History Course – WEEKEND COURSE

Map Unavailable
Date / time: 30 September - 1 October, 10:00 am - 5:00 pm

Wolfson British Academy School

Reynolds and his Circle: Weekend Art History Course - WEEKEND COURSE


2023 is the 300th anniversary of the birth of the Royal Academy’s first President, Sir Joshua Reynolds. This two-day art history weekend explores the life and work of one of Britain’s most important artists.

This course offers participants an in-depth insight into Sir Joshua Reynolds PRA and his work – via lectures, talks and archive visits from leading art historians and experts.

The weekend contextualises the many paintings and prints of Reynolds, looking at his work through various prisms: from the importance of his portraiture and the rise of celebrity culture, to questions of Britishness and empire. We explore what it meant to be Britain’s leading artist at the end of the eighteenth century and learn about his intrinsic role in the creation of the Royal Academy of Arts.

The course offers an opportunity to understand the milieu in which Reynolds was working and covers his artistic contemporaries and followers such as Thomas Gainsborough, Angelica Kauffman and Sir Thomas Lawrence. As well as providing a snapshot of the artistic life of eighteenth-century society, the course also takes an object-based approach – looking at some of Reynolds’ most famous works in depth and includes a visit to the RA archive to see ephemera related to the artist and the founding of the RA. No prior knowledge is required and debate and discussion are encouraged.

For more information and to register, please visit: 


Image: Sir Joshua Reynolds PRA – Self-portrait of Sir Joshua Reynolds, PRA, ca. 1780Oil on panel. 1270 mm x 1016 mm. Part of the RA Collection. © Photo: Royal Academy of Arts, London. Photographer: John Hammond.