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Man in Yellow Chair

ca. 1820 Unidentified oil on canvas 30 x 24 1/8 in. (76.2 x 61.3 cm.) Smithsonian American Art Museum Gift of Herbert Waide Hemphill, Jr. and museum purchase made possible by Ralph Cross Johnson 1986.65.149 Smithsonian American Art Museum
Luce Foundation Center, 3rd Floor, 1A

Luce Center Label

In the early nineteenth century, prosperous Americans along the eastern seaboard hired traveling artists to create their portraits in a forthright style made popular in colonial times by itinerant limners. This portrait of an unidentified gentleman follows that style, with strong lines that suggest, but don’t realistically replicate, the man’s features and the details of his costume. Most clients for such portraits lived outside the major urban centers of Boston, New York, and Philadelphia, and it is likely that this gentleman was a plantation owner of some means.


Portrait male - unidentified


folk art

paint - oil

fabric - canvas