Portrait of the Downer Children

  • Peter Frederick Rothermel, Portrait of the Downer Children, 1850, oil, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Josephine Regar Schlagel, 2000.8

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Peter Frederick Rothermel created an imaginary landscape of lush vegetation and clouds behind the Downer children, who pose as stiffly as statues. A medieval castle looms in the distance behind Dora, while Amy leans against a stone pedestal, holding her baby brother, Adolph. The white rabbit, a gentle creature of nature, symbolizes the children’s own natural innocence. Captain George Downer and his wife commissioned Rothermel to paint this portrait when he was the director of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, in Philadelphia.

Title
Portrait of the Downer Children
Artists
Date
1850
On View
Not on view.
Dimensions
38 1/8 x 48 1/8 in. (96.9 x 122.2 cm)
Credit Line

Smithsonian American Art Museum

Gift of Josephine Regar Schlagel

Mediums
Classifications
Keywords
  • Portrait group – family – siblings
  • Animal – rabbit
Object Number
2000.8
Palette
Linked Open Data
Linked Open Data URI