Richard Cosway was one of the most significant and versatile artistic personalities active in Regency Britain. A prodigious portraitist in oils and a sophisticated draftsman of narrative compositions, he became, undoubtedly the most important, influential and fashionable portrait miniaturist active during the last two decades of the eighteenth century and the beginning of the nineteenth. His delicate style and flattering portrayals have come to epitomise Regency society.
Cosway's flamboyant personality, eccentric mysticism, and brilliant marriage to Maria Hadfield during the 1780s brought him celebrity and notoriety. He was closely associated with George IV when Prince of Wales, as the principal recorder of his image from 1780 to 1808. Cosway also exerted a great influence on his patron's artistic taste and collecting during that period.
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3rd Earl 4th Duke Albert Museum Ancaster artist brother Catalogue century Charles Townley cm National Portrait cm The Royal collector commissioned composition connoisseur Cosway miniatures Cosway portrayed Cosway's datable draughtsman Duke of Clarence Edinburgh and London Elizabeth II Refs engraved in mezzotint fashionable Fitzgerald Fitzherbert Fondazione Cosway full-length oil Georgiana Hero and Leander Hopetoun Italy John Kemble Lloyd Lodi London Ref Lord Maria Cosway Maria Hadfield married Matthias Lock miniature painting miniatures and drawings Miss Elliot National Gallery National Portrait Gallery notable oil paintings oil portrait Old Master paintings Oxford DNB 2004 Painter Pasquale Paoli patron portrait drawing portrait miniature portrait miniaturist portraitist Prince of Wales Private Collection Ref Radnor Regency Richard and Maria Richard Cosway Royal Collection sat to Cosway Sebastiano del Piombo Self-portrait signed and dated Sir Thomas Lawrence sitter Soane Stratford Place thirty guineas Thomas Cosway Unknown Lady Victoria and Albert watercolour wife William Hazlitt William Shipley