William Hogarth (1697-1764) United Kingdom

Hogarth was an eighteenth-century English artist, now best known for his prints and engravings, depicting contemporary London life with social critique and a satirical bite. He trained as an apprentice engraver, but despite his lack of formal artistic education, he was appointed Serjeant Painter to the King in 1757, and was a popular society portraitist.

His most famous works focus on the dark underworld of the city, depicting the poverty, disease, and moral corruption he saw lurking underneath the surface of genteel society. He produced several narrative sequences of prints, not unlike a precursor to the cartoon strip, tracing the stories of naive innocents and heartless rakes in the big city.

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