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One of the great keyboard virtuosi, Anton Rubinstein (1830–1894) was also a conductor and composer. In this unfinished oil sketch titled in black paint ‘A Rubber of Whist at the Studio’, Rubinstein is depicted, head and shoulders, in a brown jacket with a dark collar turned slightly to the right, looking down. The artist was the son of the eminent pianist Ignaz Moscheles, who taught at the Royal Academy of Music for some years prior to becoming director in 1856 of the Leipzig Conservatoire in succession to Mendelssohn, after whom Felix Moscheles was named. Ignaz Moscheles, who was the dedicatee of Rubinstein’s Piano Concerto No 3, and who had known Beethoven intimately, wrote that Rubinstein’s features and short, irrepressible hair reminded him of Beethoven.
'A rubber of whist at the studio' (Anton Rubinstein, 1829–1894)
oil on canvas
H 60 x W 50 cm
presented by Mr Arthur Hill, 1928
A rubber of whist at the studio 29/6/1881. F. Moscheles