BRILLIANT DOUBLE PORTRAIT....
The HATHAWAY SISTERS.....SOLD
Probably Massachusetts (Boston), ca. 1840-1845, oil on canvas, attributed to Sturtevant Hamblin (active 1837-1856).
Project yourself to 1840. A major moment in the Hathaway sister’s young lives was this portrait. With light brown hair and blue eyes, wearing matching vibrant blue-green dresses, they are shown affectionately holding hands. Mary, the younger, holds a sprig of flowers in her right hand, while Elizabeth a red-leather book in her left, proudly communicating her literacy. Difficult to capture for most folk artists, Hamblin successfully portrays the girls as strikingly luminous, while stark in palette, such that they have a visual strength and presence that matches the sweetness of their relationship, without being saccharine. They are posed on a barely visible sofa, the primary prop, which is pushed into the dark background, further focusing the attention on the sisters. One is captivated by their direct gaze, amplified by the painting being a double portrait and of significant scale.
Retaining the original gilt frame of about 31 x 26 inches. Sight size about 27 ½ inches x 22 ½. In exceptional condition with extremely minor in-painting
DISTINGUISHED PROVENANCE includes: Wayne Pratt; Mr. and Mrs. Marvin Baten (The Marvill Collection); David Schorsch, Ray Egan, Don Walters, and for the last three decades a focal point of a remarkable lifelong New Jersey private collection. PUBLICATIONS: A LOVING LIKENESS, The Collection of Ray Egan at Bristol-Meyers Squibb, page 24, and SERENITY, Johanna McBrien, page 191, ANTIQUES AND FINE ART MAGAZINE, Autumn/Winter, 2013.