Gillray, James(gĭl`rā), 1757–1815, English caricaturist and illustrator. He was essentially self-trained although he studied at the Royal Academy and on the Continent. His caricatures of the court of George III made him immensely popular. His masterly delineations, vigorous, clever, often subtle, sometimes vulgar and grotesque, numbered more than 12,000. Among his best-known cartoons are A New Way to Pay the National Debt (1796), Social Elements in Skating (1805), and A Rake's Progress at the University (1806). Insanity ended his career in 1811.
Born Aug. 13, 1757, in Chelsea, now a municipal district of London; died June 1, 1815, in London. English graphic artist and engraver.
Gillray studied at the London Academy of Arts. Developing the satirical motifs of W. Hogarth’s work, Gillray, along with other English graphic artists of the late 18th and early 19th centuries, transformed caricature into an independent artistic genre. He is especially well known for his political caricatures, executed in a rather coarse and grotesque manner and with gaudy colors, in which he ’ridiculed the royal family, the aristocracy, the ministers, and Napoleon I. His etchings included New Method of Paying National Debts (1786) and The King of Brobdingnag and Gulliver (1803-04).
REFERENCESNekrasova, E. Ocherki po istorii angliiskoi karikatury kontsa 18 i nachala 19 vekov. [Leningrad] 1935.
Hill, D. Mr. Gillray the Caricaturist. London, 1965.