The Shrimp Girl

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The Shrimp Girl
Artist William Hogarth
Year circa 1740–1745
Type Oil painting
Dimensions 63.5 cm × 52.5 cm (25.0 in × 20.7 in)
Location National Gallery, London, London

The Shrimp Girl is an oil painting by William Hogarth. It was painted around 1740–45. It measures 63.5 x 52.5 cm. It hangs in the National Gallery, London.[1] The brush work is almost Impressionistic in style. It compares to that of French painter Jean-Honoré Fragonard. Its subject matter resembles the prints of hawkers and traders popular in Hogarth's day.[2]

The painting depicts a woman selling shellfish on the streets of London. This job was typically one for the wives and daughters of fishmongers. The girl balances a large basket of shrimps and mussels on her head. A half-pint pewter pot in the basket is the girl's measuring cup.

The picture is not strictly finished. It was still in Hogarth's estate after his death. His widow Jane was said to have told visitors, "They say he could not paint flesh. There is flesh and blood for you."[3] The pictue was only sold after his wife's death in 1789. It first received its title The Shrimp Girl in a Christie's sale catalog.

References[change | change source]

  1. Mark Hallett and Christine Riding (2006). Hogarth. Tate Publishing Ltd, pp.126–127. ISBN 1-85437-662-4.
  2. Jonathan Jones, The Shrimp Girl, William Hogarth (c1745), The Guardian, 15 September 2001.
  3. The Shrimp Girl: about 1740–5, William Hogarth, National Gallery, London, UK.