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The Bag-Piper

David Wilkie

The Bag-Piper

David Wilkie
  • Date: 1813
  • Style: Romanticism
  • Genre: portrait
  • Tag: male-portraits, bagpipers
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Wilkie exhibited this intimate portrait in 1813, when his reputation as a painter of character was already well-established. As a Scottish artist, Wilkie was keen to elevate the status of his national school. Here, however, he seems to draw on stereotypes, showing his character with a red nose and cheeks, auburn hair and thick eyebrows. These elements evoke the wildness associated with the Scots by many 19th-century English viewers. While Wilkie’s picture may appear to be taken from life, it also answered a demand for romanticised images of Scotland.

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