Art UK has updated its cookies policy. By using this website you are agreeing to the use of cookies. To find out more read our updated Use of Cookies policy and our updated Privacy policy.

The Beggar Boy

Photo credit: Falmouth Art Gallery

How you can use this image

This image can be used for non-commercial research or private study purposes, and other UK exceptions to copyright permitted to users based in the United Kingdom under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988, as amended and revised. Any other type of use will need to be cleared with the rights holder(s).

Review the copyright credit lines that are located underneath the image, as these indicate who manages the copyright (©) within the artwork, and the photographic rights within the image.

The collection that owns the artwork may have more information on their own website about permitted uses and image licensing options.

Review our guidance pages which explain how you can reuse images, how to credit an image and how to find images in the public domain or with a Creative Commons licence available.

Notes

Add or edit a note on this artwork that only you can see. You can find notes again by going to the ‘Notes’ section of your account.

The subject matter owes a debt to Murillo and to the popularity of Gainsborough's rustic scenes, as well as to the portraits of children by Opie's friend and mentor Sir Joshua Reynolds.

Opie's innate sympathy for his subject, his unpretentious style and his early experience painting vagrants and country people in Cornwall raised this work far above the level of most of his contemporaries. Opie cleverly depicts the viewer's shadow partially cast over the sitter, creating an illusion of intimacy.

This picture shows why his reputation became so high in the 1780s, and adds weight to J. W. Scobell Armstrong's view that 'none of his maturer works as a portrait painter surpassed the best of his achievements during those years'.

Many experts consider this to be one of Opie's finest paintings.

Falmouth Art Gallery

Falmouth

Title

The Beggar Boy

Medium

oil on canvas

Measurements

H 91.3 x W 71.2 cm

Accession number

FAMAG:2004.16

Acquisition method

purchased with the assistance of the Heritage Lottery Fund, the Museums, Libraries and Archives Council/Victoria and Albert Museum Purchase Grant Fund, the National Art Collections Fund, the Beecroft Bequest, Cornwall Heritage Trust and the Canterbury Auction Galleries, 2004

Work type

Painting

Normally on display at

Falmouth Art Gallery

Municipal Buildings, The Moor, Falmouth, Cornwall TR11 2RT England

This venue is open to the public. Not all artworks are on display. If you want to see a particular artwork, please contact the venue.
View venue