About this artwork

William Strang

Diego Velazquez

William Strang

Born in Dumbarton, William Strang was briefly a clerk in the family shipbuilding firm before he entered the Slade School of Art in London in 1876. At the Slade he was deeply influenced by the teaching of Alphonse Legros, particularly the etching class which Legros instituted in 1877. The subject matter of Strang's etchings, largely produced between 1880 and 1900, ranges from intense portraits to scenes of working class life and imaginary grotesques. By the turn of the century, Strang was developing the symbolic themes of his printed work in oil paintings, using rich colours in a style ultimately influenced by Venetian art.

Diego Velazquez

Velázquez became the leading Spanish artist of the seventeenth century. His outstanding skills were evident in his early works in Seville, and his talent for portraiture soon brought him to the attention of the court in Madrid. He moved there on his appointment as painter to King Philip IV in 1623. He was inspired by Titian's paintings in the Spanish royal collection and visited Italy twice. His innovative designs, and bold dazzling brushwork brought universal admiration. Velázquez was honoured as a knight for his artistic and diplomatic services in 1658.