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The First Contemporary Art Exhibition in England is Accompanied by a Catalogue

Self-portrait by Sir Joshua Reynolds.

Self-portrait by Sir Joshua Reynolds.

In 1760 the first exhibition in England of living artists was staged by the Royal Society of Arts in London. It included works by Joshua Reynolds, Richard WilsonLouis-François Roubiliac and more than 60 other artists. The exhibition was accompanied by a 15, [1]pp. catalogue entitled A Catalogue of the Pictures, Sculptures, Models, Drawings, Prints, &c. of the Present Artists, Exhibited in the Great Room of the Society of the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures, and Commerce, on the 21st of April, 1760. The catalogue, which was sold for six pence, listed 130 works divided into three sections: Pictures, 1-74, Sculptures, Models, and Engravings, 75-107, and Drawings, Engravings on Copper, 108-130. In the second section the word engravings was used to categorize engraved gems and medals.

Luckhurst, The Story of Exhibitions (1951) 15-23.

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