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Follower of Arthur Devis, A Portrait of a Gentleman

Follower of Arthur Devis, A Portrait of a Gentleman

£4,500

Circa 1745 England

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Height 14 inches (35.56 cm)
Width 11 1/2 inches (29.21 cm)
Depth 1 inches (2.54 cm)

Dimensions refer to size of frame.
Portrait of a Gentleman

Oil on canvas in period gilt frame

Provenance: Private Collection, Wiltshire, England

This portrait shows the influence of Arthur Devis. Devis was one of the leading proponents of the English conversation piece, a genre of portraiture that became fashionable in the 1720s. In contrast to the more conventional and formal tradition of British portraiture, the conversation piece was characterised by a more relaxed and intimate presentation, with sitters depicted in pairs or groups interacting with one another in everyday settings. The figures were depicted in full-length, their scale reduced within the pictorial space, sometimes in interiors or landscapes as with this portrait.

This form of portraiture encouraged some other artists of the period to embark on small scale individual portraits as in this instance. The attention to detail as demonstrated well in this portrait was remarkable with elaborate costume and fabrics painstakingly rendered almost in miniature.

Ref No | 1184

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