Source: Bell's Weekly Messenger(No.1779, Sunday, May 2, 1830.
The Exhibition of the Royal Academy, which is annually an object of considerable interest will open to-morrow. A private view of the collection was on Friday furnished to a number of the nobility, and other admirers of the arts. We are enabled, by a hasty glance at the Exhibition, to make our readers acquainted with some of its principal features, reserving all criticism till a future occasion. The present Exhibition, though not equal to the last, which was perhaps the best ever known in this country, is at least equal to many that have preceded it. It is remarkable for being the last which will ever be graced by the works of Lawrence. There are eight portraits by this eminent artist in the collection. Among them are the portraits of the Earl of Aberdeen, Lady Belfast, and Moore, the poet. That of the Earl of Aberdeen is perhaps as fine a picture as Lawrence ever produced. The Exhibition is principally deficient in specimens of historical painting. Hilton has not a single picture in the exhibition. Etty, however, has four, all of which are distinguished by this artist's usual brilliancy of colour and correct drawing. The subjects of these works are, "Judith," "A Storm," "Candaules," "King of Lydia, showing his wife by stealth to his Minister Gyges," and "A Female Dancing." There are four pictures from the pencil of Wilkie, not one of which, however, is in the style with which he has rendered the public so familiar that they almost expect every painting he produces to belong to it. His present works are a portrait of "his Majesty in the Highland dress, in which he held his court in the Palace of Holyrood-house, when he visited Scotland;" a "Representation of his Majesty's reception by the nobles and people of Scotland upon his entrance to Holyrood-house;" "The Guerrilla's Return to his Family; " and "A Spanish Senoretta, with her nurse?, walking on the Prado of Madrid." The portrait of the King will be contemplated with peculiar interest at the present moment, when such a deep interest pervades all classes of His Majesty's subjects as to the result of his indisposition. In this portrait his Majesty's person bears stronger marks of the ravages of time than we have observed in any former portrait of him, and in this respect, perhaps, it may be more faithful to the original than some of the late portraits of the King. The picture of his Majesty's reception by the Scotch people is ably executed; but the subject is one which it is impossible to make very interesting. The "Guerrilla's Return," is a pleasing picture. Turner exhibits several pictures, all of which combine his usual striking excellencies and faults. Newton has three pictures, the subjects of which are "Yorick trying on Gloves at the Shop of the Grizette;" " Shylock giving the Keys of his House to Jessica," and "Abbot Bonniface," from Scott's novel of the "Monastery." The picture of' "Shylock" and "Jessica" is executed with greater care than Newton generally bestows on his works, and is in every respect a delightful picture. The figure of "Bonniface" also displays, in a remarkable degree, the talent of the artist. E. Landseer has only two works, one representing a hunting party, in which portraits of the Duke of Athol and others are introduced. This work affords evidence of the progressive improvement of this very clever artist. A large "Water Piece" by Stanfield, appeared to be superior to any thing he has hitherto produced. Calcott, Collins, Constable and Howard have several good pictures. Phillipps, Shee, Pickersgill, and Jackson, exhibited the average number of portraits, and Ward and Cooper some fine specimens of animal painting. Clint has painted a scene from " Love, Law, and Physic," in which he has introduced excellent portraits of Liston, Mathews, and Blanchard. The water colour and sculpture rooms contain many clever specimens, to which we may hereafter allude.
Owing to the unfavourable state of the King's health, none of the Royal Family visited the private view.