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Thomas Rowlandson (1757-1827)

Buck's Beauty & Rowlandson's Connoisseur c.1799

RCIN 913698

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A pen and watercolour of a lascivious connoisseur avidly examining a female beauty with the aid of his eye glass. The man wears a wig and frock coat and carries a sword. The woman stands in right profile and with her hands in front of her, impassively returns the man's gaze. Rowlandson is contrasting the woman drawn in the style of the fashionable portraitist Adam Buck and the connoisseur drawn with his own trademark exuberant penstrokes. The image laughs at the styles of two of the best-known London artists of the day. By the late 1790s ‘Rowlandson’s Connoisseur’ was as familiar a figure as ‘Buck’s Beauty’.This is the original drawing from which a print was made in 1800.