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Shakespeare Connected - Storms and Watercolours: Visualising Shakespeare's Nature

In the Forest of Arden, Thomas Stothard, c. 1825

Thomas Stothard’s depiction of a scene from As You Like It vividly conjures its setting of the Forest of Arden through its use of richly pigmented oil paints. This play has often been recognised as playing upon pastoral conventions, but in this image the setting is paradisal, even Edenic. I would suggest that the scene may well be linked to the burgeoning early-nineteenth century fascination in exotic nature, as botanical explorers sought rare and valuable plants from across Britain’s expanding empire.

 

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