Skip to Content

All Paintings

Showing 1 of 1


  FILTER RESULTS

This object does not have an image.



Portrait of a Woman as a Bacchante

probably 1790s
25 x 20 3/4 in. (63.5 x 52.7 cm)

Elizabeth Vigée-Lebrun
French (1755 - 1842)

Object Type: Painting
Medium and Support: Oil on canvas
Credit Line: Partial and promised gift of Dr. and Mrs. James Aquavella
Accession Number: 2005.277
Link to this object
Location: Not currently on view

The woman in this painting appears as a Bacchante—a female follower of Bacchus, the god of wine and mystical ecstasy. The cluster of grape leaves symbolize wine; her disheveled hair, scanty dress, and enticing gaze suggest the decadence of Bacchanalian festivals.

During the 1700s, artists frequently portrayed their patrons as figures from classical mythology. Portraits of women in the guise of Bacchantes were also a popular theme for other leading portraitists such as Sir Joshua Reynolds and George Romney. This is possibly a portrait of Emma, Lady Hamilton, the infamous mistress of Lord Nelson. She was known as a performer of “attitudes,” or theatrical poses of Greek mythological and historical characters.

[Forman Gallery, Summer 2015]

Bibliography
See the artist's commentary on Emma Hamilton, who has sometimes been identified as the sitter in this portrait, in Elizabeth Vigée Lebrun, "Memoirs of Madame Vigée Lebrun," Doubleday, New York, 1903: pp. 66-69. Vigée-Lebrun painted Lady Hamilton on other occasions, so this reference does not specifically relate to MAG's painting.


Provenance
Dr. and Mrs. James Aquavella; their gift to the Gallery in 2005

Keywords Click a term to view the records with the same keyword

Exhibition List
This object was included in the following exhibitions:

Bibliography
This object has the following bibliographic references:

Portfolio List Click a portfolio name to view all the objects in that portfolio
This object is a member of the following portfolios:


Your current search criteria is: Portfolio is "All Paintings" and [Object]Artist - Sort Name is "Vigée-Lebrun, Elizabeth".

View current selection of records as:
CDWA Lite XML LIDO XML VRA Core 4 MODS XML Objects JSON