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A Gentlewoman

1906 J. Alden Weir Born: West Point, New York 1852 Died: New York, New York 1919 oil on canvas 30 x 25 in. (76.2 x 63.5 cm) Smithsonian American Art Museum Gift of William T. Evans 1909.7.72 Smithsonian American Art Museum
Luce Foundation Center, 3rd Floor, 9A


Luce Center Label

In A Gentlewoman, J. Alden Weir depicted a well-dressed young woman in a moment of personal reflection. She rests lightly on a chair with her eyes cast downward, completely unaware of the viewer. A contemporary critic praised this woman for her "mixture of sturdiness and charm," qualities valued in turn-of-the-century gentlewomen. In the early twentieth century, modernization brought on by steam power and railroads caused feelings of anxiety among many Americans. To help alleviate such feelings, artists created images like these of quiet interior scenes, a visually soothing antidote to an unquiet age.

Keywords

Portrait female - unidentified - waist length

painting

paint - oil

fabric - canvas

About J. Alden Weir

Born: West Point, New York 1852 Died: New York, New York 1919

More works in the collection by
J. Alden Weir