Desperate Romantics focuses on the scandals, love affairs and lives of the group of revolutionary artists, according to PA.
The Enigma star said: "It's very wild. I'm like the Malcolm McClaren to their Sex Pistols except with art instead of punk."
Rafe Spall will take on the role of William 'Maniac' Hunt, while Aidan Turner will play Dante Gabriel Rossetti. Samuel Barnett plays John Millais and Zoe Tapper has been cast as Ruskin's wife Effie.
The drama will be filmed in London, with production starting in the coming weeks.