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The Game of Chess
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The Game of Chess

Description Conservation Exhibitions Provenance Credit
Description In this enchanting painting, two little boys play chess while a third looks on, perhaps waiting to play the winner. The chessboard juts out into our space, inviting us into the game as well. The artist, himself a child prodigy, captured the pure joy of play, reflecting a revolutionary new philosophy about the importance of play in childhood that was developing throughout Europe during the late 18th century. In place of stiff, corseted garments, looser unrestricting clothes, such as the green outfit worn here, allowed children to play freely at last.
Date Description Narrative
5/01/1946Treatmentcoated; inpainted; varnish removed or reduced
10/15/1987Examinationexamined for condition
11/10/1987Examinationexamined for condition
3/01/2010Treatmentcoated; inpainted; mounted; other; surface cleaned
  • Checkmate! Medieval People at Play. The Walters Art Museum, Baltimore. 2010.
Provenance Henry Walters, Baltimore, after 1894 [mode of acquisition unknown]; Walters Art Museum, 1931, by bequest.
Credit Acquired by Henry Walters, after 1894

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oil on canvas
(Painting & Drawing)
Accession Number
H: 27 13/16 x W: 3 5/8 in. (70.7 x 9.2 cm)
Location Within Museum
Not On View


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