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Johan Joseph Zoffany (Frankfurt 1733-London 1810)

The Academicians of the Royal Academy 1771-72

Oil on canvas | 101.1 x 147.5 cm (support, canvas/panel/str external) | RCIN 400747

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This painting was produced shortly after the foundation of the Royal Academy of Arts in London - England’s first official training school for artists. Zoffany depicts 34 of the founding Royal Academicians gathered together to observe the setting of a nude life model. The only female founding Academicians are shown as portraits as their presence here would have been deemed inappropriate. In the centre, Joshua Reynolds, the Academy's first President, is shown in black, while on the left Zoffany includes a self-portrait, clearly identifying himself as the originator of the work. No. 70