Object Image

Mrs. Katherine Matthews

According to the artist’s personal registers, this portrait was painted between December 1, 1812 and January 31, 1813, and cost the sitter seventy dollars. It reveals the influence of Sully's English trip of 1809–10, during which time he studied with Benjamin West and found his stylistic model in the work of the English portraitist Sir Thomas Lawrence. In fact, this painting is a half-length adaptation of Lawrence's "Elizabeth Farren, Countess of Derby" (also in the Museum's collection). The sitter’s dynamic gesture, turn of the head, and fashionable fur wrap—as well as Sully’s bravura brushwork—are all borrowed from Lawrence. However, the American de-emphasizes the sensuality of the original w...
Oil on canvas
69.9 x 58.4cm
Image and text © Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2019

Where you'll find this

The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Permanent collection