Portrait of a Connecticut Clockmaker

Ralph Earl was born into a prominent family of craftsmen, and his portraits are painted with sharp attention to detail. In this painting the subject sits in a Sheraton fancy” armchair, a type that was especially popular in the Connecticut Valley, where Earl worked. The wooden clock on the tea table might be a kind of clock that was developed in that region for mass production. The clock and books are emblems of the subject’s skill and education, which have earned him a respectable and influential position in society. Earl also portrayed the clockmaker’s wife, and the two portraits were meant to be shown together as pendants.

Title
Portrait of a Connecticut Clockmaker
Artist
Attributed to Ralph Earl
Date
ca. 1800
Location
Dimensions
10 147 78 in. (26.120.1 cm) oval
Credit Line

Smithsonian American Art Museum

Gift of Orrin Wickersham June

Mediums
Mediums Description
oil on wood
Classifications
Keywords
  • Occupation – craft – clockmaker
  • Portrait male – unidentified
  • Cityscape – Connecticut
Object Number
1967.136.2
Palette
Linked Open Data
Linked Open Data URI