Pet Party at Hogarth’s House, Saturday, 3 September 2016, 12pm-5pm, admission free
For one day only, Hogarth’s House is inviting you to bring your own pets to see the new exhibition, Pug’s Progress: William Hogarth and Animals. Pets may spend time in the exhibition room while their owners find out about the lives of animals in 18th-century Britain through Hogarth’s art and explore the different experiences of animals in Georgian society, from pampered pet monkeys to overworked carthorses. Both owners and animals can relax in the walled garden during their visit.
“The Great Dog and the Man”: Hogarth and Pugs, a talk for adults, Wednesday, 5 October 2016, 7.00-8.00pm
Stephanie Howard-Smith will explore William Hogarth’s relationship with the pug dog, immortalised in several of his prints and paintings. The most famous image of Hogarth is his 1745 self-portrait with his pug, Trump, and the artist was closely associated with these dogs during his life and has continued to be since his death in 1764. The talk will also look at the history of the pug, which arrived in Britain in the late 17th century and was considered to be almost extinct in Britain less than a hundred years later. To book call 020 8994 6757 or email Hogarthshouse@carillionservices.co.uk
An exhibition at Hogarth’s House until 16 October 2016, admission free, open Tuesday-Sunday 12 noon to 5pm
A very fine exhibition looking at Hogarth’s depictions of animals is now on at Hogarth’s House. Based on research by Stephanie Howard-Smith, it looks at 18th century attitudes to animals including working animals as well as pets. Two WHT trustees, Sheila O’Connell and Val Bott, helped with picture research and designer Toni Marshall has ensured that the exhibition looks very handsome.
The enlarged images in the exhibition show that Hogarth was very aware of the way animals moved, sat and snarled and could depict them in amazing details despite the small size of the originals. As well as his favourite pug dogs, there are kittens, bats and a performing bear, a basket of herrings and even a huge crocodile, based on one shown hanging from an apothecary’s ceiling.
Loans to the exhibition include a very fine 18th century dog collar and cock-fighting spurs. A Wedgwood teapot and bowl have knobs on their lids moulded in the form of tiny lap-dogs on cushions. An antique wire bird cage symbolises the 18th century fashion for keeping small songbirds in the home and a replica of a bird-pot recalls the past practice of using these on the walls of houses in town to encourage nesting birds for food. Even two animals that once lived at Hogarth’s House get a mention, in an image of the memorial stones which stood in the garden until the 1850s, recording the deaths of a pet bird and a dog.