View of the Chinese Mills, Penang
Colour aquatintPublished 1 January 1821
- About the work
About the artist
Colonel Robert Smith was an engineer for the East India Company and was stationed in India with the Benegal Engineers (1805-30). He was later aide-de-camp for Commander in Chief Sir George Nugent and accompanied Nugent on a tour of India. In 1813 he joined an assignment to survey the frontier between Bihar and Central India. In 1814 he was posted to Prince of Wales Island, returning four years later after serving as field engineer during battles with Nepal. He spent three years in England (1819-22), before being stationed in Delhi. He then retired to Paignton, Devon, where he built his home, Redclyffe Towers. Smith made pencil and watercolour sketches throughout his career and, after meeting William Daniell in c.1822, also worked in oils.
William Daniell was a much travelled landscape painter. In 1784 he went to India with his uncle, the artist Thomas Daniell, where he assisted Thomas with his drawing and sketching. By the time they returned to England in 1794, William was not only a proficient draughtsman but had also perfected the art of aquatinting. He was elected an Associate of the Royal Academy in 1807 and a Royal Academician in 1822. He refused the post of draughtsman to an Australian expedition to instead make numerous sketching tours throughout England and Scotland. Daniell is regarded as a superb aquatinter and his best works are thought to be among his Scottish views for ‘Voyage Round Great Britain’. He died in London in 1837.