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The novelist and dramatist J.M.Barrie is best known as the creator of Peter Pan, or The boy who never grew up. This portrait was painted when the artist was working on the costumes for the first stage production of Peter Pan at the Duke of York's Theatre, London, in 1904. Barrie agreed to sit between rehearsals but said 'I have long ceased to be on speaking terms with my face, so why have it painted?' The composition, with the relatively small figure surrounded by empty space, hints at the essential loneliness of a man who always regretted leaving the world of childhood behind.

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