Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema: Painter of the Victorian Vision of the Classical World

Lawrence Alma Tadema 1870

Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema, OM, RA (pron.: /ˈælmə ˈtædɪmə/;[1] 8 January 1836 – 25 June 1912) was a Dutch-born, British painter.

Born in Dronrijp, the Netherlands, and trained at the Royal Academy of Antwerp, Belgium, he settled in England in 1870 and spent the rest of his life there. A classical-subject painter, he became famous for his depictions of the luxury and decadence of the Roman Empire, with languorous figures set in fabulous marbled interiors or against a backdrop of dazzling blue Mediterranean Sea and sky.

Though admired during his lifetime for his draftsmanship and depictions of Classical antiquity, his work fell into disrepute after his death, and only since the 1960s has it been reevaluated for its importance within nineteenth-century English art.