About this artwork
In this expansive view of Dominica, people along the riverbank bathe, wash linens, converse, and sell produce. The presence of indigenous Carib, African, Afro-Creole, European, and mixed-race individuals attests to the long history of white-settler colonialism in the West Indies, where valuable crops such as coffee and sugar were cultivated through the labor of enslaved people.
The Italian-born artist Agostino Brunias settled on the island, painting scenes of Caribbean life for his planter-class patrons as well as white audiences abroad. Eliding the brutal conditions of slavery, his compositions shaped a reassuring vision of British imperialism for those in power. Yet by centering enslaved and free people of color—and focusing on mixed-race interactions—he also foregrounded the human impact of colonialism.
- On View, Gallery 166
- Painting and Sculpture of Europe
- Agostino Brunias
- View on the River Roseau, Dominica
- United Kingdom (Artist's nationality)
- Oil on canvas
- 84.1 × 158 cm (33 1/8 × 62 3/16 in.)
- Gift of Emily Crane Chadbourne