Sir Nathaniel Dance-Holland

A Goose and Two Headless Men

In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Sir Nathaniel Dance-Holland 1735–1811
Graphite, watercolour and ink on paper
Support: 105 × 167 mm
frame (Half Royal): 310 × 437 × 25 mm
Purchased as part of the Oppé Collection with assistance from the National Lottery through the Heritage Lottery Fund 1996

Display caption

This is one of many small comic drawings made by Nathaniel Dance after he retired from professional portrait painting in the early 1780s. The drawings, like this one, are playful and inventive, although their subject matter and meaning is often difficult to make out.


Dance made these drawings purely for pleasure, at a time when comic art was seen as a hobby for gentlemen-amateurs. His brother, George Dance, who practised as an architect, was also a keen
amateur caricaturist.

Gallery label, September 2004

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