Love Bites: Caricatures by James Gillray

26 Mar 2015 – 21 Jun 2015

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Cost of entry

£6 full price /£5 concessions


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Love Bites marks the 200th anniversary of the death of caricaturist James Gillray. His political and social satires were the Private Eye of his day – unflinchingly cruel at times, but keenly anticipated and collected.


Although known for his derisive satires of political life, this exhibition looks at Gillray from an unusual angle and speculates on the portrayal of marriages and alliances in his work – be they sexual, political, or bizarrely anatomical. Gillray shows how varied and tricky a kiss can be in sealing political deals and that then, as now, royal and aristocratic figures were judged according to the beds they shared.

It also explores Gillray’s devotion to high art and his classical training, and shows how Rubens, in particular, was a key influence. The exhibition features sixty works taken from the outstanding collection of New College, Oxford, one of the greatest and best-preserved groups of Gillray’s work.


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Todd Porterfield

Exhibiting artists

James Gillray


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