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John Phillip (1817-67)

The Dying Contrabandista Signed and dated 1858

RCIN 404562

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John Phillip, from Aberdeen, made three visits to Spain, the first in 1851-2. His art was transformed as he captured its exotic flavour and colour. Here Phillip returns to the theme of the wounded guerilla treated by Wilkie. He portrays the noble death of a smuggler in the arms of his beloved. She holds a mirror to his lips to check for his last breath, as companions keep watch in the venta, or inn, where they have taken refuge. Purchased by Queen Victoria, 1858