Hogarth’s ‘A Harlot’s Progress’ charts the unfortunate fall of the likeable Moll Hackabout from pretty young ingénue to prostitute after her arrival in London. First appearing as a series of paintings, it was then reproduced as engraved prints. They were sometimes presented as three or even six captioned images on one page, creating a sequential visual narrative that was a forerunner of the comics. This set of engravings were included as illustrations in the 1848 edition of Joseph Gay’s Lure of Venus.
- Article by:
- John Harris Dunning, Paul Gravett
- Art and anarchy in British comics
As Oscar Wilde famously observed, ‘Everything in the world is about sex except sex’. There is something about the lens of desire that is particularly revealing about a culture.