The Diary of Joseph Farington:
Volume 3, September 1796 - December 1798; Volume 4, January 1799 - July 1801

Joseph Farington, Kenneth Garlick, Angus Macintyre

Publicaton Date
September 1979
Standard Number
Yale University Press
926 pages, volumes 3 & 4 of 16.

Joseph Farington (1747–1821) was a professional topographical artist and lived most of his life in London.  Through his extensive involvement in the affairs of the Royal Academy, his wide circle of friends, and his membership in several clubs and societies, he touched the life of his time at many points.  This diary, which he kept from 1793 until his death, provides a meticulous record of his actions and observations and is an invaluable source for the history of English art and artists.  It also constitutes an absorbing record of this period’s social, political, and literary developments.

This second pair of volumes covers the period in which Farington’s influence within the Royal Academy was at its height and he earned the title of ‘dictator of the Royal Academy.’  These years where characterized by artistic controversy over such matters as the eligibility of architects for membership, the expulsion of James Barry from his position as Professor of Painting and then from the Academy itself, and the alleged destructiveness of James Wyatt’s restoration of Durham Cathedral.  Farington immersed himself in these and other artistic matters ranging from the campaign for the establishment of a national gallery to his budding friendships with the young Turner and the young Constable.