Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice


    (Ecuadorean, 1913-1997)
    Arpista, 1963
    Oil on canvas
    31 x 47 inches (78.7 x 119.4 cm)
    Signed and dated lower left: E. Kingman 63

    Eduardo Kingman Riofrio was an Ecuadorean painter known for his psychological portrayals of Ecuador's marginalized indigenous population. His work shows a strong indebtedness to the Mexican Muralists as well as the early Peruvian indigenists. Having trained at the School of Fine Arts in Quito, Kingman received the illustrious Aguilera Prize in 1936. This acclaimed prize is celebrated as the highest artistic honor offered in Ecuador. Shortly after receiving national praise, he moved to New York in order to study with Camilo Egas (1889-1962). Egas was one of the first Ecuadorian artists to address indigenous themes in his painting, and his influence is recognizable in Kingman's mature style. In 1939, Egas and Kingman were commissioned to execute a mural for the New York World's Fair. The result of their collaboration was the monumental painting La Cosecha (The Harvest), which was prominently featured in the Ecuadorian Pavilion. Kingman remained in New York during World War II and, for a brief period after the war, worked at the San Francisco Museum of Art. In 1947, he returned to Ecuador and served as the Director of the National Museum. Kingman later founded the Caspicara Art Gallery in Quito which became the unofficial headquarters of the Indigenismo movement.

    Kingman helped cultivate the indigenist movement in Ecuadorean art, focusing his canvases on the Indian people and their history of servitude. His figures are generic rather than individual, and serve to represent the collective native population. Kingman documents the physical effects of harsh working conditions through his use of exaggerated hands. Rather than the face, the hands have become the primary signifiers of emotion. They reveal the figure's inner tension and anxiety as they protrude like claws from the surface of the canvas. Here, the darkened eyes of the harpist are hollow and lifeless, alluding to dehumanization through colonialism.

    Condition Report*: Overall very good condition.
    *Heritage Auctions strives to provide as much information as possible but encourages in-person inspection by bidders. Statements regarding the condition of objects are only for general guidance and should not be relied upon as complete statements of fact, and do not constitute a representation, warranty or assumption of liability by Heritage. Some condition issues may not be noted in the condition report but are apparent in the provided photos which are considered part of the condition report. Please note that we do not de-frame lots estimated at $1,000 or less and may not be able to provide additional details for lots valued under $500. Heritage does not guarantee the condition of frames and shall not be liable for any damage/scratches to frames, glass/acrylic coverings, original boxes, display accessories, or art that has slipped in frames. All lots are sold "AS IS" under the Terms & Conditions of Auction.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    June, 2009
    3rd Wednesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 9
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 7,303

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    19.5% of the successful bid (minimum $14) per lot.

    Shipping, Taxes, Terms and Bidding
    This item cannot be shipped using standard methods. Please contact us for more information. Sales Tax information

    Important information concerning Sales Tax and Resale Certificates. Learn More

    Terms and Conditions  |  Bidding Guidelines and Bid Increments |  Glossary of Terms

    Sold on Jun 3, 2009 for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)
    Track Item

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Consign to the 2022 April 1 Illustration Art Signature® Auction .

    Learn about consigning with us

    My sincere thanks and appreciation for the professionalism in handling, promoting, and selling my painting.
    David H.,
    Dallas, TX
    View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source:

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search