Consuelo Vanderbilt Balsan. Letter to Boldini. May 20, [1906?] [copy in departmental archive file], comments on the reaction to this painting once it was hung in Sunderland House, stating that everyone admires it although some dislike her pose.
Giovanni Boldini. Letter to an unknown recipient. March 29, 1906 [published in Italian transl. in Ref. Dini and Dini 2002, vol. 2, p. 181], notes that he has just finished this painting.
Jean Louis Vaudoyer. "Giovanni Boldini." Dedalo 4 (1930–31), p. 1197, ill., calls it "La Duchessa di Marlborough e suo figlio".
[Emilia] Cardona [Boldini]. Vie de Jean Boldini. Paris, 1931, plate XVI, calls it "Mère et enfant".
Art News 31 (April 1, 1933), ill. on front cover.
Alonzo Lansford. "Metropolitan Turns the Other Chic." Art Digest 22 (August 1, 1948), p. 12, ill., criticizes the exaggerated proportions in this portrait.
Consuelo Vanderbilt Balsan. The Glitter and the Gold. New York, 1952, p. 138, recalls that she sat for this portrait at Boldini's request and that because it "was a good likeness we decided to acquire it and to have the canvas enlarged to include my younger son"; notes that Boldini finished it in London and had difficulty with the position of her left arm.
Three Hundred Years of New York City Families. Exh. cat., Wildenstein & Co., Inc. New York, 1966, unpaginated, no. 41, erroneously dates it 1905.
Carlo L. Ragghianti Ettore Camesasca in L'opera completa di Boldini. Milan, 1970, p. 121, no. 416a, ill., states incorrectly that this painting was once in the collection of Baron Maurice de Rothschild.
Richard Ormond. John Singer Sargent: Paintings, Drawings, Watercolors. New York, 1970, pp. 64, 253, fig. 51, compares Sargent's portrait of the same sitters in "The Marlborough Family" (1905; Blenheim Palace, Oxfordshire) to the "frenetic and nervous stylization" of this picture.
Gary A. Reynolds. Giovanni Boldini and Society Portraiture: 1880–1920. Exh. cat., Grey Art Gallery and Study Center, New York University. New York, 1984, pp. 42–43, 61, no. 20, ill., calls it one of Boldini's most important commissions of the early 1900s; notes that in order to enlarge the original portrait to include the sitter's son, Boldini pasted a photograph of the canvas onto a larger sheet and used this as the basis of an oil sketch for the expanded composition (collection Vito Doria, Bologna).
Enrico Piceni in Three Italian Friends of the Impressionists: Boldini, De Nittis, Zandomeneghi. Exh. cat., Stair Sainty Gallery. New York, 1984, pp. 19, 30–31, no. 5, ill. (color), notes that the "sinuous arabesque" of this composition reflects the influence of art nouveau.
Kenneth McConkey in "'Well-bred Contortions' 1880–1918." The British Portrait, 1660–1960. Woodbridge, 1991, pp. 366, 378, colorpl. 67.
Andrew Wilton. The Swagger Portrait: Grand Manner Portraiture in Britain from Van Dyck to Augustus John, 1630–1930. Exh. cat., Tate Gallery. London, 1992, p. 196, fig. 38, suggests that Boldini may have copied the bird's eye perspective of this picture from Sargent's "Mrs. Carl Meyer and Her Children" (1896; private collection).
15 Paintings by Giovanni Boldini Collected by the Late Baron Maurice de Rothschild. Christie's, New York. November 1, 1995, pp. 15, 18–20, fig. 5, states erroneously that it was once owned by Maurice de Rothschild.
Bianca Doria. Giovanni Boldini: catalogo generale dagli archivi Boldini. Milan, 2000, vol. 1, colorpl. 520; vol. 2, unpaginated, no. 520, ill., calls it "La Duchessa Consuelo di Marlborough col figlio Lord Ivor Spencer Churchill".
Robin Gibson with an introduction by Norbert Lynton. Painting the Century: 101 Portrait Masterpieces 1900–2000. Exh. cat., National Portrait Gallery. London, 2000, pp. 13–14, 62–63, ill. (color), notes that the spaciousness of this composition is unusual in Boldini's work; suggests that it may have been commissioned "as a gesture of independence" following the sitter's recent separation from the Duke of Marlborough.
Piero Dini and Francesca Dini. Giovanni Boldini, 1842–1931: Catalogo ragionato. Vol. 3, Catalogo ragionato della pittura a olio con un'ampia selezione di pastelli e acquerelli. Turin, 2002, part 2, pp. 477–78, no. 919, ill.
Piero Dini and Francesca Dini. Giovanni Boldini, 1842–1931: Catalogo Ragionato. Vol. 1, La Vita e l'iter-artistico. Turin, 2002, pp. 190, 208, colorpl. CI.
Piero Dini and Francesca Dini. Giovanni Boldini, 1842–1931: Catalogo ragionato. Vol. 2, L'Epistolario. Turin, 2002, p. 181.
Anna Villari in Boldini. Ed. Francesca Dini et al. Exh. cat., Palazzo Zabarella, Padua. Venice, 2005, p. 254, no. 104, ill. pp. 200, 255 (color, detail and overall).