School of Art

Contact Details

School of Art
Aberystwyth University
Buarth Mawr
SY23 1NG

Tel: +44 (0)1970 622460

Fax: +44 (0)1970 622461


Display artist/maker:

Dante Gabriel Rossetti

Born: 1828, UK, England, London   Died: 1882, Birchington-on-Sea

Painter, illustrator, poet and translator. Born into a family whose members included several successful scholars and poets, he aspired to become a poet and a painter. Initially a student in Henry Sass's (1788 – 1844) Drawing Academy from 1841 to 1845, he went on to enrol at the Antique School of the Royal Academy but found the institution restrictive and left in 1848. He was taken on by the artist Ford Madox Brown, who became a lifelong friend. During this year he also met William Holman Hunt, whose work he admired, and they went on to share a studio. Through Hunt, Rossetti met John Everett Millais and the Pre Raphaelite Brotherhood was born. Translating and reading the works by Dante (Alighieri) and others, Rossetti aspired towards Italianate Medievalism in his paintings, poetry and designs, the latter including work for William Morris. His art was not received well by the critics but the patronage of John Ruskin slowly improved his reputation. Rossetti married the artist Elizabeth Siddal, the group’s model, in 1860, but their relationship was fraught, and she committed suicide in 1862. Rossetti spent his remaining years moving between relationships, including a long liaison with Morris’s wife, Jane. He became increasingly bohemian, and although his paintings were successful, his poetry was not, and Rossetti had a breakdown in 1872. In 1874 Morris cut him out of the ‘Firm’, resulting ultimately in isolation from their family, depression, drug abuse and mental ill health until his death.

Objects in the collections associated with this artist/maker

Clara Vaughan Morgan WD365 WaterColourOrDrawings

Ruth Herbert WD366 WaterColourOrDrawings