Friday, February 16, 2018

04 Paintings, PORTRAIT OF A LADY, of the 18th & 19th C., with Footnotes. #20

John Wesley Jarvis, (American, 1780-1838)
Maria Holmes, American 1780-1834)
Oil on canvas
28 1/4" x 24 1/4"
Private collection

The subject is depicted in a black dress with lace shawl, her body angled slightly to her right, with part of a red painted chair visible behind her. 

Mary Jane Holmes (April 5, 1825 – October 6, 1907) was a bestselling and prolific American author who published 39 popular novels, as well as short stories. Her first novel sold 250,000 copies; and she had total sales of 2 million books in her lifetime, second only to Harriet Beecher Stowe.

Portraying domestic life in small-town and rural settings, she examined gender relationships, as well as those of class and race. She also dealt with slavery and the American Civil War with a strong sense of moral justice. Since the late 20th century she has received fresh recognition and reappraisal, although her popular work was excluded from most 19th-century literary histories. More on Mary Jane Holmes 

John Wesley Jarvis (1780 or 1781 – January 14, 1839) was an American painter, born at South Shields, England. His father was an American mariner, who moved his family to the United States in the mid-1780s. The Jarvis family settled in Philadelphia; there he spent his childhood and began his artistic training. His formal instruction began around 1796.

Jarvis moved to New York in 1801. Within a year he was working on his own as an engraver. In 1803 he entered into a partnership with Joseph Wood. His partnership with Wood lasted seven years. Together they executed engravings, miniatures, and larger portraits. He enjoyed great popularity, though his conviviality and eccentric mode of life affected his work. General Andrew Jackson was one of his sitters. 

While New York always remained his home base, he continued his habit of extended residences in other cities for most of the rest of his life. 

Jarvis rose to the top of his profession by 1814, when he took over an unprecedented commission for six full-length portraits of the naval heroes of the War of 1812 for the City of New York. For over a decade, he remained the premier portrait painter in New York./

As early as the 1820s, however, he received some personal setbacks. In 1823 he was sued successfully by his apprentice John Quidor for breach of contract, and the following year he lost custody of his children in a court battle with his estranged second wife. A decade later, in 1834, he suffered a debilitating stroke while in New Orleans. Partially paralyzed and mentally incapacitated, he spent the rest of his life in New York City, cared for by his sister. He died there in 1840, in poverty. More on John Wesley Jarvis 

Portrait of Vittoria della Rovere, (1622-1694)
Oil on canvas 
66.8 x 52 cm.
Private collection

Vittoria della Rovere, Grand Duchess of Tuscany (1622-1694) was the wife of Ferdinando II de’ Medici. She was the daughter of Federigo-Ubaldo della Rovere (1604–1648) and Claudia de’ Medici.

She is best known as the last heir of the art collection assembled by her family in Urbino and as the person who, through marriage, passed them on to the Grand Duchy of Tuscany.  Always interested in worldly and cultural affairs, she spoke Spanish and French, knew Latin and sponsored a variety of literati, becoming patroness in 1654 of a literary academy in Siena called Le Assicurate, devoted exclusively to women. More on Vittoria della Rovere

Justus Sustermans (28 September 1597 – 23 April 1681) also known as Giusto Sustermans, was a Flemish painter working in the Baroque style. He was born in Antwerp and died in Florence.

Sustermans is chiefly notable for his portraits of members of the Medici family as he was their court painter. His work can be found in both the Palatina Gallery and the Uffizi Gallery in Florence, and in many other galleries around the globe. During his lifetime he was fêted as the finest portrait painter in Italy.

He first studied in Antwerp under Willem de Vos (a nephew of the painter Maerten de Vos), becoming his assistant in 1609. He then spent three and a half years in Paris, where he studied and collaborated with Frans Pourbus the younger. He was eventually invited to Florence under the patronage of the Medici family where he studied Italian portraitists such as Il Guercino, the Spanish Diego Velázquez and France’s Pierre Mignard. While in Italy he also became influenced by the Venetian artists. More on Justus Sustermans

Pablo Picasso, 1881–1973
Dora Maar assise
Ink, gouache and oil paint on paper on canvas
689 x 625 mm

Henriette Theodora Markovitch, pseudonym Dora Maar (November 22, 1907 in the 6th arrondissement of Paris – July 16, 1997 in Paris) was a painter who exhibited with the Surrealist group, before becoming a photographer and reporter. She was Picasso's mistress in the late 1930s and the war years, and one of his most important models during that period. A formidable personality, she was instrumental in encouraging Picasso's political awareness. He also admitted to being somewhat afraid of her. This work shows Dora as a smart, independent French woman, with her hands crossed elegantly in her lap. More on this painting

Pablo Ruiz y Picasso, also known as Pablo Picasso (25 October 1881 – 8 April 1973), was a Spanish painter, sculptor, printmaker, ceramicist, stage designer, poet and playwright who spent most of his adult life in France. Regarded as one of the greatest and most influential artists of the 20th century, he is known for co-founding the Cubist movement, the invention of constructed sculpture, the co-invention of collage, and for the wide variety of styles that he helped develop and explore. One of his most famous works are the proto-Cubist Les Demoiselles d'Avignon (1907).

Picasso demonstrated extraordinary artistic talent in his early years, painting in a naturalistic manner through his childhood and adolescence. During the first decade of the 20th century, his style changed as he experimented with different theories, techniques, and ideas. His work is often categorized into periods. While the names of many of his later periods are debated, the most commonly accepted periods in his work are the Blue Period (1901–1904), the Rose Period (1904–1906), the African-influenced Period (1907–1909), Analytic Cubism (1909–1912), and Synthetic Cubism (1912–1919), also referred to as the Crystal period.

Exceptionally prolific throughout the course of his long life, Picasso achieved universal renown and immense fortune for his revolutionary artistic accomplishments, and became one of the best-known figures in 20th-century art. More on Pablo Picasso

Man Ray, 1890 - 1976
Portrait of Dora Maar, 1936

In 1935, Maar was commissioned to photograph the set of Jean Renoir's The Crime of Monsieur Lange. It was here that Maar was introduced to Picasso. Two years later, after the breakup of his relationship with Marie-Thérèse Walter with whom he had his daughter Maya, Maar photographed Picasso in his studio as he painted one of the greatest works of his life and indeed the 20th century, Guernica. More on Dora Mar 

Man Ray (born Emmanuel Radnitzky; August 27, 1890 – November 18, 1976) was an American visual artist who spent most of his career in France. He was a significant contributor to the Dada and Surrealist movements, although his ties to each were informal. He produced major works in a variety of media but considered himself a painter above all. He was best known for his photography, and he was a renowned fashion and portrait photographer. Man Ray is also noted for his work with photograms, which he called "rayographs" in reference to himself. More on Man Ray

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