External: Gainsborough to Turner: The Golden Age of English Painting
- Johan Zoffany 1733–1810
- Oil paint on canvas
- Unconfirmed: 965 × 1346 mm
frame: 1247 × 1635 × 78 mm
- Bequeathed by Simon Sainsbury 2006, accessioned 2008
William Blair was a Colonel in the East India Company who commanded the brigade at Cawnpore. Zoffany paints him with his wife Jane and daughters, the elder also called Jane at the piano, and Maria feeding a cat held by an Indian girl.
In the background are three paintings: a large hill scene, and two of Indian customs which fascinated and horrified westerners. One shows wood being piled for suttee, the burning alive of a widow, and the other a religious ritual of appeasement called Charak Puja in which a man is suspended by a wire between the shoulder blades.
Gallery label, October 2013
Does this text contain inaccurate information or language that you feel we should improve or change? We would like to hear from you.
- Blair family(1)