Dominic Bate


Research Interests: Artistic Practice, Commerce, History of Science, Religion, British Empire, Eighteenth Century
Dissertation: “Pythagorean Visions: Picturing Harmony in British Art, 1719–1753”

Dominic has BA and MA Degrees in Art History from the Courtauld Institute of Art. His postgraduate studies focused on the history of the printed image in Western Europe before 1700 and culminated in his Master's thesis on the English reception of the French engraver Robert Nanteuil. Since then, the focus of his research has shifted to the long eighteenth century. He is currently working on a PhD thesis that examines the relationship between aesthetics, natural philosophy, commerce, and religion in Britain in the early eighteenth century, when the consumption of pictures and an interest in art theory were at an all-time high. More specifically, his thesis considers the influence on artistic practice of ideas associated with the ancient Greek sage Pythagoras, particularly the notion that the world is organized along mathematical lines. In doing so, his dissertation brings canonical artists into conversation with figures who are now known only to specialists. These include the inventor of three-color printing, Jacob Christoph Le Blon (1667–1741); the satirical painter and printmaker William Hogarth (1698–1764); the architectural surveyor Robert Morris (1703–1754); and the talented draftsman Giles Hussey (1710–1788). Before coming to Brown Dominic worked as a print cataloguer in the British Museum's Department of Prints and Drawings.