William Etty home page title

York born artist William Etty R.A. (1787-1849) was one of the most prolific and successful British painters working in the first half of the nineteenth century. He was celebrated for his ambitious historical paintings and his vivid use of colour. However, his art sharply divided public opinion and he faced repeated criticism for his preoccupation with 'pulpy' flesh and his supposedly perverse interest in the female nude.

In June 2011-January 2012 York Art Gallery staged the William Etty: Art and Controversy exhibition, the first large scale celebration of the artist’s work in over a hundred years. This website offers an interactive record of the William Etty: Art and Controversy exhibition. It enables visitors to the site to tour the exhibition rooms, view Etty’s paintings in detail, and learn more about the artist's significant contributions to nineteenth-century British Art.

York Art Gallery
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The Exhibition

Introductory video

Explore the exhibition

Play a gallery slideshow

Read comments from the exhibition

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Etty and his Works

Flick through Etty's sketchbooks

View a timeline of Etty's life and career

Further reading

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Education and Etty

Listen to recordings by York students

Curatorial tasks for students

The Etty Walk