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Euphemia White Van Rensselaer

George P. A. Healy (1813–1894)

Date:
1842
Medium:
Oil on canvas
Dimensions:
45 3/4 x 35 1/4 in. (115.1 x 89.2 cm)
Classification:
Paintings
Credit Line:
Bequest of Cornelia Cruger, 1923
Accession Number:
23.102
  • Description

    Euphemia Van Rensselaer (1816–1888) was the daughter of Stephen Van Rensselaer (see 54.51) and the sister of Alexander Van Rensselaer (see 61.70). She was born on the family manor, Rensselaerswyck, near Albany, New York, and inherited a portion of her father's vast estate in 1839. This picture was painted in 1842, the year before her marriage to John Church Cruger, a prominent lawyer with whom she settled on Cruger's Island near Barrytown, New York. Healy painted the portrait in Paris, where he executed works for visiting Americans as well as for the French king, Louis Philippe. He blends both lavish detail and texture with a sensitive portrayal of character before a setting suggestive of the Roman campagna from which the sitter had just returned. The portrait, which shows the influence of the German-born painter Franz Xavier Winterhalter, demonstrates a stunning simplicity, grace, and vivacity rarely equalled in Healy's oeuvre.

  • Signatures, Inscriptions, and Markings

    Signature: [at lower right]: G. P. A. Healy Paris 1842

  • Provenance

    the sitter, died 1888; her daughter, Cornelia Cruger, by 1923

  • See also
    Who
    What
    When
    In the Museum
    MetPublications
11055

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