National Gallery of Art - THE COLLECTION
image of Family Group Francis Wheatley (artist)
British, 1747 - 1801
Family Group, c. 1775/1780
oil on canvas
overall: 91.7 x 71.4 cm (36 1/8 x 28 1/8 in.) framed: 113.3 x 92.7 x 6.6 cm (44 5/8 x 36 1/2 x 2 5/8 in.)
Paul Mellon Collection
1983.1.43
Not on View
From the Tour: British Conversation Pieces and Portraits of the 1700s
Object 4 of 6

Conservation Notes

The medium-weight canvas is finely plain woven; it has been lined. The ground is white, probably containing white lead, smoothly and evenly applied and of moderate thickness. The painting is executed thinly and very fluidly (possibly with an admixture of resin to the oil to increase fluidity) blended wet into wet; the features and costume are articulated with finely drawn touches of rich, opaque paint, with some impasto in the white highlights. There is a slight pentimento in the positioning of the man's right knee; the girl's pink skirt can be seen beneath the paint of the breeches. There is some solvent abrasion in the darks and the impasto has been flattened during lining; there is a substantial area of retouching in the hem of the lady's apron close to the girl's skirt, and the large cracks through the man's face have been inpainted. The most recent varnish is synthetic, slightly toned with black pigment; residues of the earlier, unevenly removed natural resin varnish have discolored yellow to a significant degree.

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