DirectorEdward Bennett
One line synopsisA film which attempts to contextualise the work of English satirist, William Hogarth (1697-1764), and his contribution to the development of the popular print, with reference to methods of image reproduction.

Aerial view over the City of London. Commentary says "He was born in the City of London in 1697." Shop card engraved by William Hogarth for Ellis Gamble, one of his early employers; cards for other gold- and silversmiths. VO reading Hogarth’s own words on his early life and apprenticeship to a silver plate engraver, and copper plate engraving. Exterior print shop; Hogarth VO on the speed of piracy of images by the print-sellers themselves. Woman buying etching of A Midnight Modern Conversation (1733). Ashley Cowper with his Wife and Daughter (1731): VO continues, talking about doing portraits with small figures ("conversation pieces"), but not making enough money to keep his own family. Pages from account books. Examples of "the grand style of history painting", Christ Healing the Lame Man at the Pool of Bethesda (1736) in St Bartholomew's Hospital, and The Good Samaritan (1737), which were not successful either. Captions followed by engravings (series from 1732), A Harlot’s Progress: The Quarrel with her Jew Protector, Apprehended by a Magistrate, The Scene in Bridewell, She Expires While the Doctors are Quarrelling, The Funeral. Details from The Laughing Audience (1733). Drums of printing press. VO says Hogarth applied to Parliament for redress against piracy of his plates. Printers’ works. Newspaper printers. "The Case of Designers, Engravers, Etchers, &c…", Hogarth’s open letter putting the case for copyright protection for these works. Versions of engraved self-portrait (The Painter and the Pug: Gulielmus Hogarth (1745)). The original painting. Row of postcard reproductions of Hogarth paintings (landscapes, family groups, portraits, self-portrait, etc.). Customers in Tate Gallery shop. David Garrick as Richard III (1745), which earned Hogarth £200, the highest sum ever paid for a portrait. Life class at art school. Hogarth’s VO describing his work on the portrait of Captain Thomas Coram (1740). The portrait in the Thomas Coram Foundation. Other portraits, Lavinia Fenton, Duchess of Bolton (c.1740-1750), one of The Graham Children (1742), Thomas Herring, Archbishop of Canterbury (1744-1747), Heads of Six of Hogarth's Servants (c.1750-1755). A plate of various profiles. Some of a series of caricature sketches of women’s heads. VO continues to talk about money, etc. Contemporary family group sitting in front of set of engravings. Gallery visitors looking at the Marriage à la Mode series (1743), The Death of the Earl and The Visit to the Quack Doctor. The Fellow ’Prentices at their Looms from the Industry and Idleness series (1747). The Idle ’Prentice Turn’d Away and Sent to Sea,The Industrious ’Prentice Out of His Time & Married to His Master’s Daughter, The Idle ’Prentice Home from Sea and in a Garret with a Common Prostitute, The Industrious ’Prentice Alderman of London, the Idle One Brought Before Him…, The Idle ’Prentice Executed at Tyburn. Print seller’s in London. Gin Lane and Beer Street (1751). Commentary says that Hogarth was promoting beer as an invigorating brink against the destructive gin. The Four Stages of Cruelty (1751) showing what happens to people who pursue a course of cruelty first to animals and then to human beings.

Engraving of The Gate of Calais (The Roast Beef of Old England) (1749) with Hogarth’s description of his arrest and release heard over. The cliffs at Dover.
Paul Before Felix (1748) in Lincoln’s Inn. Hogarth’s word on the lack of demand for historical paintings heard over. Engraving of The Bench (1758). Various caricatures. Version of the self-portrait, Hogarth Painting the Comic Muse (1758). Hogarth’s words over talking about his painting Sigismunda Mourning over the Heart of Guiscardo (1759) and asking £400 for it from a rich patron. Quotation from a letter to the patron, and the patron’s reply. Time Smoking a Pipe (1761). Auction. Caption: "1761." Hogarth’s house at Chiswick. VO talking about an illness which lasted a year. The series of The Times (1762-1763) in which Hogarth takes an anti-war stance. John Wilkes Esq (1762), part of Hogarth’s response to criticism of his politics by his friends. Newspaper printers. The Bruiser (1763). Engraving plates. The Bathos (1764). Hogarth’s words over suggesting that his riposte to his critics helped restore his health. Statue of artists including Hogarth, Gainsborough, Rubens, etc. Credits.

Production companyTattooist International
Running time23 minutes
Full credits

Camera Clive Tickner,
Jeff Baynes;
Sound Jon Sanders;
Electrician Max Marrable;
Grip Bill Geddes,
Allan McKellar;
Editor Brand Thumim;
Production assistants Phoebe de Gaye,
Meir Wigoder;
Rostrum camera Danny Boon;
Titles Rosalind Boon;
Production manager Georgina Martin;
Director Edward Bennett.
Produced through Tattooist International Ltd.
Acknowledgements to: The British Museum,
The British Library,
The National Gallery
The Tate Gallery,
The Victoria and Albert Museum,
London Borough of Hounslow,
The Thomas Coram Foundation,
St Bartholomew’s Hospital,
The Royal Academy of Arts,
The Honourable Society of Lincoln’s Inn,
The Evening News,
Weinreb & Douwma Ltd.,
Suckling & Co.,
Odhams Watford Ltd.,
Sotheby Parke Bernet & Co.
© The Arts Council of Great Britain 1976.

Film segmentHogarth - ACE071.2
Hogarth - ACE071.3
Hogarth - ACE071.4
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