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Spanish, A Man and a Child eating Grapes

Key facts
Full title A Man and a Child eating Grapes
Artist Spanish
Date made probably 19th century
Medium and support Oil on canvas
Dimensions 73 × 57.8 cm
Acquisition credit Salting Bequest, 1910
Inventory number NG2526
Location Not on display
Collection Main Collection
Previous owners
A Man and a Child eating Grapes

A man and child are seated at a table. The man looks attentively at the child, who turns away and picks a grape from a bunch nearby. The rest of the composition is only roughly sketched in; the child’s left arm, the man’s body and the table are unfinished.

The painting was once thought to be by a seventeenth-century Spanish artist, and was formerly attributed to Velázquez and to Pedro Núñez de Villavicencio, who was known for his popular childhood scenes.

However, it is more likely that it is a copy of a seventeenth-century Spanish painting by an artist working in the late eighteenth or early nineteenth century. It cannot have been made later than this as the painting was first recorded in the mid-nineteenth century at the Earl of Clare sale in London. During this period, artists copied works by Spanish old masters as part of their academic training.

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