Angelica Kauffman

1 Mar-30 Jun 2024

Royal Academy Of Arts
London W1J 0BD


In March 2024, the Royal Academy of Arts will celebrate the life and work of Angelica Kauffman (1741-1807), a founding member of the Royal Academy and one of the most acclaimed artists of the 18th century. Presenting history paintings as well as portraits, including some of her finest self-portraits, the exhibition will trace Kauffman’s artistic career from child prodigy to one of Europe’s most sought-after painters. The exhibition will feature over 30 artworks by Kauffman and include important international loans, many of which have never been seen in the UK before.

Born in Chur, Switzerland, in 1741, Kauffman’s artistic talent was soon recognised during her childhood. As her family moved between Switzerland, Austria and Italy, Kauffman was trained as both a musician and as a painter, eventually choosing to pursue the latter professionally. She spent much of her early life in Italy, where she was able to study the works of the Old Masters. She moved to London in 1766 and enjoyed a prosperous career, earning significant fame, fortune and an influential circle of patrons, many of whom were women. When the Royal Academy was established in 1768, Kauffman was one of only two women founding members, along with Mary Moser. Kauffman exhibited extensively at the Royal Academy throughout her time in London and continued to exhibit there after her return to Rome in 1782, where she would live for the rest of her life.