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Small figure studies in oil by Constable are rare, and this is the only known dated example. It was made in 1810, and illustrates his interest at that period in observing  figures out of doors. Earlier that same year he had exhibited a painting at the Royal Academy of the Church Porch, East Bergholt (Tate, shown to the left/right) which includes a similar figure to this one, shown seated by a gravestone.

September 2004