Drawing from Life at the Royal Academy, Somerset House

Various artists/makers

Not on view

Drawing the human figure was central to artistic training from the Italian Renaissance forward and, once London's Royal Academy was founded in 1768, regular life classes were established for the benefit of academicians and students. Both male and female models posed nude, but only men over the age of twenty were permitted to attend as draftsmen until 1898. Casts of sculptures offered another means to explore human anatomy and examples of the latter are displayed around the back of the room.

Drawing from Life at the Royal Academy, Somerset House, Designed and etched by Thomas Rowlandson (British, London 1757–1827 London), Hand-colored etching and aquatint

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