Art Collections Online
William Williams, 'Will Penmorfa' (1759-1828)
CHAPMAN, J. (fl.1826 - )
Media: oil on canvas
Size: 138.0 x 99.0 cm
Acquired: 1946; Gift; Baroness De Rutzen
Accession Number: NMW A 532
The blind William Williams (1759-1828) known as 'Will Penmorfa' was harpist to the Gwynne family at Tregib near Llandeilo. Many Welsh families maintained harpists. The best known, John Parry (1710-1782), was retained by Sir Watkin Williams Wynn as organist and harpist at Wynnstay at £110 per annum. Williams is playing the harp in a typically Welsh left shoulder position. The draughtsmanship of the instrument is unrealistic, especially in its stringing system. The artist who signed this picture may be the J Chapman who exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1819 and 1836.