Hogarth S Marriage La Mode by Judy Egerton
|Title||Hogarth s Marriage la mode|
|Publisher||Yale University Press|
|Language||English, Spanish, and French|
William Hogarth (1697-1764), master of color and paint, is widely appreciated as one of the most original of all British artists. His great comic masterpiece, Marriage A-la-Mode -- six paintings depicting "A Variety of Occurrences in High Life" -- was engraved and first published in 1745. Frequently reprinted since, the series remains popular to this day. Desiring a wider audience than he could gain through the portraits and small conversation pieces he painted for well-to-do patrons in the earlier years of his career, Hogarth decided to paint pictures that could be engraved and offered to the public in sets. He described the subjects of his painting-engraving-publishing enterprise as "modern moral subjects". Hogarth's first modern moral subject was A Harlot's Progress, 1732, showing the sordid underside of the fast developing, turbulent metropolis. Ten years later, the artist undertook Marriage A-la-Mode to tell the story of a marriage arranged between the son of a bankrupt nobleman and the daughter of a rich City of London alderman. With no love in the marriage, the discordant lives of the bride and groom progress through adultery and venereal disease to murder, execution, and suicide.