Object Detail


Artist
Period
19th century
Media
Oil on canvas
Measurements
52 x 43 inches
59 x 51 inches (frame)
Classification
Subject Category
Figures
Portrait
Credit Line
Bequest of Lucy Copeland Farnsworth, 1977.5.137
Accession No
77.5.137
Context
Nothing is known of the artist who painted the portrait of the two youngest Farnsworth children, Fannie (1852-1877) and Willie (1849-1856). Although nothing is known, either of the circumstances that led to the painting’s creation, it is likely that it was made as a memorial to the children sometime after their tragic early deaths. Such paintings and sculptures were relatively commonplace in the late nineteenth century, when fatal diseases and infections so often struck the young.

Willie died in 1856 just a week before he turned seven, and his sister died at the age of twenty-five, only months after their father died in 1876. Each is wearing clothes seen in photographs of them in the Farnsworth Family Archives.

Featured in “Maine and American Art: Farnsworth Art Museum”.

Classification

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