Overview

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Inscription

Marks and Labels

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Provenance

Painted for the sitter's parents, John [d. 1795] and Lydia [d. 1822] Heathcote, Conington Castle, Huntingdonshire; by descent to their great-grandson, John Moyer Heathcote [1834-1912]; purchased 1913 from the Heathcote estate by (Thos. Agnew and Sons Ltd., London); sold the same year to (Duveen Brothers, Inc., London, New York, and Paris);[1] sold c.1913 to Herbert, 1st Baron Michelham [1851-1919], Hellingly, Sussex; (his estate sale, Hampton & Sons, on the premises, 20 Arlington Street, London, 23-24 November 1926, 2nd day, no. 292); Captain Jefferson Davis Cohn, Paris,[2] on behalf of (Duveen Brothers, Inc., London, New York, and Paris); sold March or April 1927 to Alvan T. Fuller [1878-1958], Boston;[3] The Fuller Foundation, Boston; gift 1961 to NGA.

Exhibition History

1864
Pictures by Italian, Spanish, Flemish, Dutch, French, and English Masters, British Institution, London, 1864, no. 184.
1928
Exhibition of Paintings Loaned by Governor Alvan T. Fuller, Art Club, Boston, 1928, no. 6.
1939
Paintings, Drawings, Prints from Private Collections in New England, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, 1939, no. 48, pl. 26.
1959
A Memorial Exhibition of the Collection of the Honorable Alvan T. Fuller, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, 1959, no. 22, repro.

Bibliography

1856
Fulcher, George Williams. Life of Thomas Gainsborough, R.A.. 2d rev. ed. London, 1856: 228.
1898
Armstrong, Sir Walter. Gainsborough & His Place in English Art. London, 1898: 197; popular ed., London, 1904: 269.
1951
Taylor, Basil. Gainsborough. London, 1951: 22, pl. 10.
1958
Waterhouse, Sir Ellis. Gainsborough. London, 1958.
1962
Cairns, Huntington, and John Walker, eds., Treasures from the National Gallery of Art, New York, 1962: 124, color repro.
1963
Walker, John. National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C. New York, 1963 (reprinted 1964 in French, German, and Spanish): 319, repro.
1965
_Summary Catalogue of European Paintings and Sculpture. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1965: 55
1968
Cooke, Hereward Lester. Painting Lessons from the Great Masters. London, 1968: 208, repro. (two details), color repro. opposite.
1968
_European Paintings and Sculpture, Illustrations. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1968: 47, repro.
1975
_European Paintings: An Illustrated Summary Catalogue. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1975: 144, repro.
1975
Walker, John. National Gallery of Art, Washington. New York, 1975: no. 495, color repro.
1984
Walker, John. National Gallery of Art, Washington. Rev. ed. New York, 1984: 537, no. 493, color repro.
1985
_European Paintings: An Illustrated Catalogue. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1985: 166, repro.
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: 82-84, color repro. 83.
1999
Zuffi, Stefano and Francesca Castria, La peinture baroque. Translated from Italian by Silvia Bonucci and Claude Sophie Mazéas. Paris, 1999: 364, color repro.

Technical Summary

The medium-weight canvas is plain woven; it has been lined. The ground is white, thinly applied. There is a very thin pinkish-brown imprimatura that serves as the middle tone in the costume and hair and provides a vibrant contrast in the sky. The painting is executed fairly thinly with opaque paints freely blended wet into wet; this is followed, in the flesh tones, by glazes of red and by a very fine, distinct application of the details of the features, and, in the landscape, by slashing distinct highlights. There is limited impasto in such details as the bouquet of flowers. The painting is in good condition apart from slight abrasion; retouching is minimal. The moderately thick natural resin varnish, lightly pigmented with black, has not discolored.

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