Young Indian wearing a Turban
Thomas Hickey (1741-1824)

Young Indian wearing a Turban, Ca. 1800.

Oil on canvas, H. 0.44 m; W. 0.38 m

Provenance: Private collection.

This portrait of a young man wearing a turban was probably painted at the very end of the 18th century. The Irish Thomas Hickey was a travelling painter who worked in India during the 1780s and from 1798 to his death in 1824. In comparing our portrait with that of Purniya, Prime Minister of Mysore painted by the artist around 1801, we find similarities especially in the treatment of the eyes.

The British painter Tilly Kettle (1735-1786) had been the first English portrait painter to travel to India. Kettle and other European artists introduced easel painting and oil painting to India, a country at the time under the dominion of the British East India Company.