Mary Abigail Willing Coale

  • Thomas Sully, Mary Abigail Willing Coale, 1809, oil on wood, Smithsonian American Art Museum, George Buchanan Coale Collection, 1926.6.4

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Thomas Sully painted Abigail Willing Coale with rosy cheeks, an alluring gaze, and supple white skin, which he accentuated with the low neckline of her gown. The artist painted her in a fur wrap that captures the color of her luminous gray-green eyes and softens the transition from the figure to the background. Sully, a skilled and successful portrait painter, wrote that “From long experience I know that resemblance in a portrait is essential; but no fault will be found with the artist, (at least by the sitter,) if he improve the appearance.”

Title
Mary Abigail Willing Coale
Artist
Date
1809
On View
Dimensions
28 7/8 x 23 7/8 in. (73.2 x 60.8 cm)
Credit Line

Smithsonian American Art Museum

George Buchanan Coale Collection

Mediums
Mediums Description
oil on wood
Classifications
Keywords
  • Portrait female – Coale, Mary Abigail Willing
Object Number
1926.6.4
Palette
Linked Open Data
Linked Open Data URI

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