Frederick Brown. An Impromptu Dance: a scene on the Chesea Embankment, 1883. Oil on canvas, 106 x 153 cm.

Online courses

Representing the City: Victorian London

  • Begins: Thursday 15 April 2021
    Until: Thursday 13 May 2021
    (2-4pm NB: booking closes 48 hours before the event)
  • Lecturer: Jo Rhymer

As the most powerful nation in the world, Britain witnessed rapid industrialisation and enormous social inequality during Queen Victoria’s reign. Focusing on representations of London, this course explores various and often conflicting depictions of the capital and its inhabitants seen through the lens of a range of artists who either lived in the city or visited London – many from abroad – during the mid- to late nineteenth century. Works by Whistler, Sickert, Leighton, Tissot, Pissarro, Monet, Sargent and others are explored as well as a variety of materials including photographs, illustrated magazines, prints and posters to consider how the visual arts, both high and low, responded to and contributed to changes within Victorian London’s society.


  1.  Victorian London: representing modern life
  2.  The cult of beauty
  3.  Impressionism and London
  4.  Whistler and the Thames
  5.  Sickert and the music halls


Jo Rhymer is an independent art historian specialising in nineteenth- and early twentieth-century French and British Art. She currently lectures for the V&A and The Wallace Collection. She is a Panel Tutor at the University of Cambridge Institute of Continuing Education.

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