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“Life in quietness & ease”: Thomas Gainsborough’s Landscapes
Two paintings by Thomas Gainsborough hang opposite each other in the Taft Museum of Art’s Music Room. On the south wall, two boys dressed in finery look out from a canvas measuring nearly seven feet high. On the north wall, a more modestly sized painting features livestock and rustic peasants dramatically lit within a shadowy copse of trees. This pastoral scene embodies Gainsborough’s true passion: the landscape of England’s countryside.