Miss Mary Cruikshank, only sister of James Cruikshank
John Downman (British, Ruabon, Wales 1750–1824 Wrexham, Wales)
Watercolor, charcoal, colored chalks over graphite
sheet: 9 x 7 1/2 in. (22.9 x 19 cm)
Bequest of George D. Pratt, 1935
Not on view
This image captures the fashionable daytime wear of young women in Britain around 1780. A simple white gown is adorned by a large blue bow affixed at the waist, with a second wide ribbon used to decorate the large loose cap. Downman placed his subject against a wall, to accentuate her profile, but opened up the image at left with a landscape view. Grapevines hanging from above suggest summer warmth.
Signature: Signed in graphite at lower left of recto: "J. Downman / Pinx. / 1781"
Inscription: Inscribed in pen and brown ink on an enclosed sheet of previously mounted, off-white laid paper (in eighteenth-century hand): "This picture is of Mary Cruikshank the only sister of my grandfather James Cruikshank by J. [indecipherable: ending with '--ing']"
Hodgkins Collection; Donor: George D. Pratt
George Charles Williamson John Dowman: His Life and Works, with a Catalogue of his Drawings. London, 1907, pl. 3.