Joseph Farington

Ulswater and Liulph's Tower, Matterdale, Cumberland, drawn by Joseph Farington, engraved by John Pye, published by T Cadell and W Davies, Strand, London, 1815. © LakesGuides website. With thanks to Jean Norgate.

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Grid Reference: NY 3876 1848

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More about Joseph Farington

Born in Leigh, Lancashire in 1741, Joseph Farington, as well as being a notable English landscape painter and topographical draughtsman, is chiefly remembered for his detailed diaries, which provide an invaluable insight into the London art world of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. 

Farington was influential in attracting tourists to the English Lake District in the early nineteenth century, as one of the group of artists who descended on the area at the time in search of the picturesque. His views of the Lakes were engraved and published in book form in 1789 and 1816.

Farington was part of a group of Romantic artists and writers whose portrayal of the wild and rugged landscape transformed public opinion towards the area. Whilst previously the region had been looked upon as a barren and inhospitable wilderness, it was now portrayed as an area of outstanding beauty, and the crowds duly followed. William Gilpin, who was the first to use the term Picturesque, said of Farrington, “It was not necessary for anyone else to draw the Lake District accurately because Mr Farrington had already done that” 

There are two more of Joseph Farington's artworks in the Virtual Art Gallery