The Lost Genius of British Art: William Dobson
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Born in London in 1611, Dobson became Charles I’s principal painter on the death of Van Dyck in 1641. A year later, at the outbreak of the English Civil War, Dobson accompanied the King to Oxford, where he painted spectacular portraits of the Royal Family and the leading Royalist supporters. Following the King’s defeat by Cromwell and the Parliamentarians in 1646, Dobson returned to London where he died in poverty, aged just 35.
It was a tragically short career, but a hugely significant one. In this film, the art critic Waldemar Januszczak uncovers the fascinating life and times of the artist, and argues that Dobson is a lost genius of British art. Travelling to great houses, museums, castles and palaces across Britain, Januszczak examines many of Dobson’s masterpieces and the impressive settings in which they can be found, and shows why this great artist does not deserve to be forgotten.