Admission is always free Directions

Open today: 11:00 to 6:00

Inscription

falsely signed and dated, lower left on ledge: R F Pinx / 1746; on reverse of old stretcher (now replaced): PORTRAIT OF WILLIAMINA MOORE, WIFE OF DR. PHINEAS BOND AT THE AGE OF NINETEEN YEARS, 1746

Provenance

(Rose M. [Mrs. Augustus] de Forest, New York); sold 12 October 1926 to Thomas B. Clarke [1848- 1931], New York, as a portrait of Williamina Moore by Robert Feke;[1] sold 29 January 1936 by Clarke's executors through (M. Knoedler & Co., New York), as part of the Clarke collection, to The A.W. Mellon Educational and Charitable Trust, Pittsburgh; gift to NGA, 1942.

Exhibition History
1928
A Loan Exhibition of Paintings by Early American Portrait Painters, The Century Association, New York, 1928, no. 11, as Williamina Moore by Robert Feke.
1928
Portraits by Early American Artists of the Seventeenth, Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries, Collected by Thomas B. Clarke, Philadelphia Museum of Art, 1928-1931, unnumbered and unpaginated catalogue, as Williamina Moore by Robert Feke.
1939
American Historical Paintings, Golden Gate International Exposition, San Francisco, 1939, no. 10, as Williamina Moore by Robert Feke.
1943
American Paintings, National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., 1943.
1947
American Paintings from the Collection of the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., 1947.
1948
American Paintings from the Collection of the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., 1948.
1949
American Paintings from the Collection of the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., 1949.
1949
Exhibition of Early American Portraits on Loan from the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., Pack Memorial Public Library, Asheville, North Carolina, 1949, no. 1, as Williamina Moore by Robert Feke.
1950
The Face of American History, Columbia Museum of Art, South Carolina, 1950, no. 6, as Williamina Moore by Robert Feke.
1951
American Paintings from the Collection of the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., 1951.
1951
American Portraits from the National Gallery of Art, High Museum of Art, Atlanta, 1951, no. 2, repro, as Williamina Moore by Robert Feke (organized by the Atlanta Art Association).
1953
American Paintings from the Collection of the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., 1953.
1955
American Paintings from the Collection of the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., 1955.
1956
American Paintings from the Collection of the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., 1956.
1961
Extended loan for use by the U.S. Department of State, Washington, D.C., 1961-1962.
Bibliography
1930
Foote, Henry Wilder. Robert Feke, Colonial Portrait Painter. Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1930: 70, 105, 170-171, 210, 213, repro. facing 70.
1970
American Paintings and Sculpture: An Illustrated Catalogue. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1970: 158, repro., as American (?).
1980
American Paintings: An Illustrated Catalogue. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1980: 308, as Unknown [Formerly Considered American].
1985
European Paintings: An Illustrated Catalogue. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1985: 408, repro. as Unknown Nationality 18th Century.
1992
Hayes, John. British Paintings of the Sixteenth through Nineteenth Centuries. The Collections of the National Gallery of Art Systematic Catalogue. Washington, D.C., 1992: 117-120, repro. 119.
Technical Summary

The medium-fine canvas is tightly plain-woven; it has been lined. The ground is white, smoothly applied and of moderate thickness. There is a grey imprimatura beneath the figure, which is used for the shadows in the dress, and a reddish-brown imprimatura under the landscape on the right. The painting is executed richly, fluidly, and loosely except in the flesh tones; the flesh tones are more tightly painted, blended wet into wet, with red and reddish-brown shadows; the blue drapery is underpainted with white, glazed over with deep blue, with thinner glazes in the highlights; the dress is painted creamily, with pink and brown glazes; the landscape is very fluidly painted in what appears to be a single layer over the imprimatura. The "signature" has been shown to be false since it continues into cracks in the underlying paint film. The paint surface is abraded from heavy-handed cleaning, especially in the darks, and the impasto has been flattened during lining. There is major retouching in parts of the head; large losses in the right shoulder and between the left arm and torso are inpainted; and much of the deeper shadow in the blue drapery, and the lower left of the picture, are reinforced with glazes. The thick, natural resin varnish has discolored yellow to a significant degree.