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Charles Turner (1773-1757) and William Say (1768-1834), after Sir Joshua Reynolds, P.R.A.
Charles Turner (1773-1757) and William Say (1768-1834), after Sir Joshua Reynolds, P.R.A.

The Dilettanti Society

Details
Charles Turner (1773-1757) and William Say (1768-1834), after Sir Joshua Reynolds, P.R.A.
The Dilettanti Society
mezzotints, proof before titles
unframed
S. 22¾ x 16¼in. (57.7 x 41.3cm.)

Condition Report

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Lot Essay

The Dilettanti Society was founded in 1732 as a dining club for gentlemen who had travelled to Italy, its purpose apparently to perpetuate the youthful high spirits as well as the cultural pursuits associated with the Grand Tour. Patrons of Italian opera, they subsequently turned their attention to the sponsorship of archaeology, but they wished also to encourage living artists and proposed during the 1740's and 1750's to found an Academy of Art in London. The idea of a group portrait seems to have been first suggested at the dinner of 12 January 1777, which we know that Reynolds attended.

The original paintings hang at Brooks's in St Jamses, London, but still belong to the Dilettanti Society

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