Thursday, 12 September 2013

It's Trad, Dadd!


Richard Dadd (1817-1886). What a card, eh? Precocious childhood talent and award winning student, went on a Victorian Orientalist trip to the Middle East and ends up thinking he was the reincarnation of the Egyptian god Osiris.

Returned to England to recuperate, he decided that his dad (Dadd's dad) was actually the devil and stabbed his poor father to death. Fled to France and tried to kill again but was overpowered by the local gendarmes and dispatched to Bethlem psychiatric hospital in 1843 and later Broadmoor.

Diagnosed with probable paranoid schizophrenia, Dadd remained in secure care until his death over 40 years later. Luckily, his asylum doctors were relatively enlightened for the time and Dadd was encouraged to paint his troubles away, leaving behind a small but insanely (sorry) detailed body of work.

Contradiction: Oberon and Titania (1854-58)

The Fairy Feller's Master-Stroke (1855-64)
Now where have I seen that before?
Titania Sleeping (c.1841)

The Child's Problem (1857)

Songe de la Fantasie (1864)

Bacchanalian Scene (1862)

Thomas Philips Reclining in Turkish Costume (1842-3)

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