Mrs. Alexander Cumming, née Elizabeth Goldthwaite, later Mrs. John Bacon
John Singleton Copley
On View: American Art Galleries, 5th Floor, From Colonies to States, 1660–1830
This portrait of a minister’s wife is one of a number of disarmingly direct and factual likenesses painted by John Singleton Copley about 1770. It reveals his growing passion for the accurate but artful description of light on forms and textures. Here, Mrs. Cumming emerges from a deeply shadowed space to face the raking light that illuminates her turned head and clothing. The modeling of her face is delicately gradual, moving from her richly lit features to the nuanced shadow that envelops her left side.
Oil on canvas
29 13/16 x 24 11/16 in. (75.7 x 62.7 cm)
frame: 35 1/2 × 30 5/8 in. (90.2 × 77.8 cm) (show scale)
Signed lower right (initials in monogram): "J S C p. Bost 1770"
Gift of Walter H. Crittenden
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John Singleton Copley (American, 1738-1815). Mrs. Alexander Cumming, née Elizabeth Goldthwaite, later Mrs. John Bacon, 1770. Oil on canvas, 29 13/16 x 24 11/16 in. (75.7 x 62.7 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Walter H. Crittenden, 22.84 (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 22.84_SL1.jpg)
overall, 22.84_SL1.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
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