The teaching of non-professional artists in eighteenth century England
The introductory chapter explains terms used throughout this thesis and why this period was chosen for study. The history of the introduction of drawing to the curriculum of Christ's Hospital, the Lens family who were the drawing masters there, and their drawing manuals and teaching methods are the subject of the second chapter. The third deals with the teaching of drawing at private academies, particularly Thomas Weston's in Greenwich, and with his and the Bickham family's activities as drawing masters to the pupils of this academy and the children at the Royal Naval Hospital. William and Sawrey Gilpin at Cheam Preparatory School are examined through the surviving correspondence of the Grimstons of Kilnwick in chapter four. Alexander Cozens's activities as a drawing master occupy the remaining half of the thesis. Chapter five explains how he himself learnt to draw and describes his earliest known employment as a drawing master at Christ's Hospital from 1749 to 1754. Chapter six traces his activities through the 1750's as a private drawing master and as the author of publications intended to assist the artistic invention of amateurs and professionals alike. It also examines his relationship with his son, John Robert Cozens, with Sir George Beaumont at Eton College, and with Henry Stebbing who studied Cozeris's 'blot' method. Chapter seven examines the activities of three of Cozens's private pupils through their surviving work and family papers in order to ascertain the element of original artistic creativity in the landscapes produced under his instruction. The concluding chapter considers why art education gained considerable importance in the education of young gentlemen and gentlewomen during this period, and whether the drawing masters' methods of teaching them changed. Finally, the role of drawing masters as creators and disseminators of artistic theories and their contribution to the development of English landscape watercolour painting are discussed.