The word was first used in English in 1748, in the time of Hogarth, who was one of the principal exponents of the technique. The idea of exaggerating characteristic features to stress traits of personality is very ancient and, perhaps, inseparable from portraiture itself.

Annibale Carraci is credited with originating the technique. Ghezzi (1674-1755) was perhaps the first artist to make a living out of caricature.

Honore Daumier (1808-1879) worked as a cartoonist on “La Caricature” and was imprisoned for representing Louis Philipe as Gargantua. Daumier made over 4000 lithographs for various journals.

What is a Caricature?

Have you seen cartoons in newspapers?

They often show famous people such as politicians and movie stars. The subjects are often drawn in an unkind way which exaggerates certain of their features. This type of drawing is a caricature.

Caricatures are meant to make fun of people. An artist chooses certain features about a person such as their nose or teeth. These features are then exaggerated.


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