Thursday, May 2, 2013

The Orchards are in bloom - 18C Images of Early Americans with Fruit

Orchards everywhere around us here in the Chesapeake are in full bloom just now. Absolutely beautiful.

Pear Blossoms
Throughout the 18th century, artists painted portraits of British colonials & early Americans holding fruits that the viewer might reasonably suppose came from the trees in their orchards. Some scholars look to period emblem books and attribute complicated symbolism to each type & quantity of fruit depicted in these portraits. Some do not. Here are a few of my favoite portraits containing tree fruit as props.

1679 Detail. painting attributed to Thomas Smith (1650-1691). Mrs. Richard Patteshall (Martha Woody) and Child.

1732 Detail. John Smibert (1688-1751). Jane Clark (Mrs. Ezekiel Lewis).

1750 Detail. Charles Bridges (1670-1747). Mrs Augustine Moore.

1750 Detail. Joseph Badger. Portrait of Elizabeth Greenleaf of Charlestown.

1755 Detail. Joseph Blackburn (fl in the colonies 1753-1763). Isaac Winslow and His Family.

1757 Detail. John Wollaston (1710-1775). Probably Elizabeth Dandridge.

1767 Detail. James Claypoole (1743-1814). Ann Galloway (Mrs Joseph Pemberton).

1769 Detail. John Singleton Copley (1738-1815) Martha Swett (Mrs Jeremiah Lee).

1769 Detail. John Singleton Copley (1738-1815). Elizabeth Murray (Mrs. James Smith).

1771-73 Detail. Charles Willson Peale (1741-1827). The Peale Family.

1771 Detail. John Singleton Copley (1738-1815). Elizabeth Lewis (Mrs. Ezekiel Goldthwait).

1772 Detail. Charles Willson Peale (1741-1827). General John Cadwalader, his First Wife, Elizabeth.

1773 Detail. John Singleton Copley (1738-1815). Hannah Fayerweather (Mrs. John Winthrop).

1774 Detail. Charles Willson Peale (1741-1827). Isabella and John Stewart.

1774 Detail of painting attributed to Ralph Earl (1751-1801). Elizabeth Perscott (Mrs. Henry Daggett)

1785 Detail. Charles Willson Peale (1741-1827). Ann Marsh (Mrs David Forman) & Child.

1787 Detail. Charles Willson Peale (1741-1827). Deborah McClenahan (Mrs. Walter Stewart).

1788 Detail. Charles Willson Peale (1741-1827). Benjamin & Eleanor Ridgley Laming. National Gallery of Art.

1788 Detail. Charles Willson Peale (1741-1827). William Smith & Grandson.

1795 Detail. James Peale (1749-1831). Artist & His Family.

1720 Detail. Nehemiah Partridge. Wyntje Lavinia Van Vechten.

1729 Detail. John Smibert. The Bermuda Group.

1747-1749 Detail. Robert Feke (1707-1751). Mary Channing (Mrs. John Channing).

1760-65 Detail. Joseph Badger (1708-1765). Sarah Badger Noyes.

1769 Detail. John Singleton Copley (1738-1815). Elizabeth Storer (Mrs. Isaac Smith).

1772 Detail. Winthrop Chandler (1747-1785). Eunice Huntington Devotion.

1775 Detail. Henry Benbridge (1743-1812). Archibald Bullock Family.

1785 Detail. Ralph Earl (1751-1801). Callahan Children.

1785-90 Detail. Beardsley Limner (Sarah Bushnell Perkins (1771 - 1831). Elizabeth Davis (Mrs. Hezekiah Beardsley).

1798 Detail. Ralph Earl. Mrs. Noah Smith and Her Children.

1800 Detail. Anonymous Artist. Emma Van Name.