Ninos de la familia Canals

  • Unidentified (Puerto Rican), Ninos de la familia Canals, 19th century, watercolor on ivory, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Teodoro Vidal Collection, 1996.91.22

Luce Center Label

It is not always possible to identify the sitter in a miniature portrait, and research is still being done on some of the works in the Museums collection. Miniatures became popular in England during the early 1700s, commissioned by wealthy families on the occasions of births, engagements, weddings, and bereavements. These paintings, elaborately set into lockets or brooches, provided the wearer with a sentimental connection to a loved one. The back of the miniature often revealed a lock of the sitters hair, symbolizing affection, commitment, or loss. The daguerreotype, invented in 1839, provided a cheaper, faster alternative, and portrait miniatures grew less popular. At the turn of the twentieth century, with the establishment of the American Society of Miniature Painters, miniatures enjoyed a brief revival.

Ninos de la familia Canals
19th century
On View
Not on view.
image: sight 3 3/8 x 3 3/8 in. (8.7 x 8.7 cm)
Credit Line

Smithsonian American Art Museum

Teodoro Vidal Collection

Mediums Description
watercolor on ivory
  • Portrait group – family – siblings
  • Children
Object Number
Linked Open Data
Linked Open Data URI

More from artist

ca. 1775-1825
oil on canvas lined with masonite
ca. 1680-1690
oil on wood panel
ca. 1835-1850
watercolor on ivory

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