186 pages | 14 Color Illus. | 70 B/W Illus.
This book offers a renewed look at Emma Hamilton, the eighteenth-century celebrity who was depicted by many major artists, including Angelica Kauffman, George Romney, and Élisabeth Vigée-Le Brun. Adopting an art historical and feminist lens, Ersy Contogouris analyzes works of art in which Hamilton appears, her performances, and writings by her contemporaries to establish her impact on this pivotal moment in European history and art. This pioneering volume shows that Hamilton did not attempt to present a coherent or polished identity, and argues instead that she was a kaleidoscope of different selves through which she both expressed herself and presented to others what they wanted to see. She was resilient, effectively asserted her agency, and was a powerful inspiration for generations of artists and women in their own search for expression and self-actualization.
Introduction: Emma Hamilton, the most beautiful compound ever beheld
1. La vie de Lady Hamilton est un roman
2. The acme of Sir William’s Delights
3. Emma’s Attitudes: Movements and Surprising Transformations
4. The Tarantella
5. Model, Muse, and Artist
Routledge Research in Gender and Art is a new series in art history and visual studies, focusing on gender, sexuality, and feminism. Proposals for monographs and edited collections on this topic are welcomed.