Staring at art from the Tate's collection and thinking about it

Tuesday, 15 July 2014

1. Caricature. A Woman Seated on a Two-Legged Ass-Headed Monster Straddling a Man in Military Uniform - George Dance

George Dance, 1. Caricature. A Woman Seated on a Two-Legged Ass-Headed Monster Straddling a Man in Military Uniform, 1809, ink, watercolour and graphite on paper, 200 x 193 mm, Tate.













George Dance is primarily known as an architect, and secondarily as a portraitist, and hardly at all as the creator of weird-ass drawings.  Nevertheless, this work of insanity is part of a larger portfolio, mostly of more easily-digestible caricatures of his contemporaries.
   Exactly what possessed him to do this, I don't know.  I'm guessing it's some sort of social satire, possibly relating to a play on words, hence the 'He wadled over a Duk' handwritten at the bottom.  But I actually don't want to know.  I'd rather treasure the mystery of this slightly deranged-looking woman, sitting on half a moth-eaten dragon, while a man shelters under his hat, as if waiting for the shit to hit it.

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