Chinese collection

Item LL 8823

Accession no: LL 8823
Object type: Reverse Painting on Glass
Name: Portrait of HRH George Augustus, Prince of Wales, afterwards King George IV
Materials: Paint on glass
Place made: Guangzhou (Canton), China
Date made: Qing Dynasty, Jiaqing ,1800-1805
Measurements: H. 75.5 cm, W. 65.5 cm

Description: Reverse painting on glass, with a three-quarter length portrait of the young prince in Masonic costume, seated. He faces half left, his head slightly more towards the front, with brown hair brusquely parted in middle, and white stock with knot below. He wears a black velvet coat, with a single row on cuffs, narrow red facings at wrist and neck. A large plain Masonic ‘square and compasses’ medallion hangs from his neck on a wide sash of dark blue satin. The prince wears a Masonic apron of white and grey watered silk with gold braid, over white satin breeches.

The chair is a massive seat of state, carved and gilded, the fluted column-side supports ending above in spheres, with a large gilt coronet in centre, above, surmounted by plume of white feathers. The background shades off from black below to a greyish white behind the high back of the chair.

Original English frame, lacquered and gilt with black glass mount. Two old inscriptions on the frame beneath the glass on the back. On the black mount appears the artist's name - ‘FARQUA, CANTON’.

Farqua is probably the same as Fatqua who was active in Canton between about 1800 and 1830 and was known as a painter in oils, watercolours and on glass. His shop/workshop was situated on New China Street. A surviving engraved label advertising his work is illustrated in Carl Crossman’s ‘The Decorative Arts of The China Trade’.

The portrait, according to printed information on the back, remained 'in the Pavilion at Brighton for many years during the Period that the Georges occupied it. When they ceased to use The Pavilion as a Royal Residence, Princess Charlotte gave the picture to Miss Frances Lovatt.' Acquired by Lever after 1920. LLAG Invoice file No. 116.

C. L. Crossman, The Decorative Arts of The China Trade, Woodbridge, 1991, p.57.