This self-portrait sums up the feelings of the generation of artists who witnessed the founding of the Royal Academy in 1768.
The heavy curtain and Stringer’s dishevelled clothes and awkward pose create a sense of theatre. The artist appears as an isolated figure waiting for inspiration to strike and his canvas to be filled with grand and original visions. The Academy had raised the expectations of artists but, like many of his generation, this painter found his high hopes frustrated. He found little work and is said to have become an alcoholic.
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Daniel Stringer (1)