The Arts Society South Downs

Event Details

Event Date:


Start time: 10:30

End time: 14:00

Event Short Description

Special interest day – The Cult of the South Pacific: From Cook to Gauguin by Leslie Primo

Event Information

Arts Society South Downs October lectures

The Cult of the Celebrity – Omai, the Exotic and Joshua Reynolds

Lecture 1 looks at the events leading up to Joshua Reynolds’s portrait of Omai, exploring this moment from history when two worlds collided: the key players in Omai’s story, his origins in Tahiti, his background, his motivation in coming to England and his time in English society.

Looking at Joshua Reynolds’s ideas regarding his self-image, his influences, how this related to his image of Omai and consider what this portrait tells us about 18th century English society. What happened when Omai returned to the South Seas, the impact of going back: can one ever go back? Lastly, the legacy of the image we call Omai, an enigma in its own right.

Cook and the Invention of Paradise – Voyages and Discoveries

Lecture 2 studies the enduring Western obsession with and the invention of the so called ‘exotic’ or ‘noble savage’, starting with the first discovery of the Island of Tahiti in 1767.

2 morning talks followed by lunch.

Admission Details

Adult: £40


Child Age Limit:

Concession Details: £35 for Members

Organiser Details

Name: Jane Allison

Telephone: 01798 813314



Venue Details

Address: Fittleworth Village Hall, Fittleworth, West Sussex, RH20 1JB

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