Sir David Wilkie R.A. (1785-1841) "The Card Players" 23cm x 30cm (9in. x 12in.)

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Lot 1121
Sir David Wilkie R.A. (1785-1841) "The Card Players" 23cm x 30cm (9in. x 12in.)

Sold for £ 19,975 (US$ 24,954) inc. premium

The Scottish Sale

23 Aug 2003, 11:00 BST

Edinburgh

Sir David Wilkie R.A. (1785-1841)
oil on canvas, relined,

Footnotes

  • Hamish Miles writes: "This is surely the sketch which Wilkie's friend and biographer, Allan Cunningham, recorded in 1843 as 'a sketch, with variations, of (the "Card Players")....in the possesion of Mr. Howard, R.A. A black man is introduced as an onlooker of the game, and adds much to the merit of the work.'
    Wilkie had come to know Henry Howard, later the Secretary to the Royal Academy, in 1808. The sketch was presumably painted a year or so afterwards, since it is made up of elements taken from the "Card Players", indeed, and also from the 'Rent Day' (both in Private Collections). The former, which provided the group around the table--with variations--had been finished by the beginning of March 1808; the latter, which provided the subsidiary group of the man guzzling at a separate table on the left, watched by an expectant dog, by May that year (although altered late in March 1809). Further evidence for the date of the sketch lies in the presence of the negro. One appears in the "Village Festival" (Tate Gallery), which Wilkie began to paint in September 1809, although apparently without using a model for that figure until November.
    In making the sketch, Wilkie reused a canvas; the ghostly remnant of a female head, painted on a larger scale, shows through to the right."

    We are very grateful to Hamish Miles for his assistance in the cataloguing of this lot.
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