Exhibitions/ Art Object

Elijah Boardman (1760–1823)

Artist:
Ralph Earl (American, Worcester County, Massachusetts 1751–1801 Bolton, Connecticut)
Date:
1789
Medium:
Oil on canvas
Dimensions:
83 x 51 in. (210.8 x 129.5 cm)
Classification:
Paintings
Credit Line:
Bequest of Susan W. Tyler, 1979
Accession Number:
1979.395
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 755
In this extraordinary American portrait, the shopkeeper Elijah Boardman proudly displays the stock of textiles sold in his dry-goods store. Boardman advertised the store as a source for luxurious imported textiles from all over the world, and some are readily identifiable in the painting. Beneath the top shelf bearing spools of silk ribbon is a bolt of red spotted Indian bandanna silk meant to be cut into handkerchiefs. On the shelves below are silks from China, both pink and blue taffetas and white gauzes, and a floral cotton chintz very similar to the white chintz dress on view in the exhibition. On the lowest shelf sit English woolens, with one bolt open to display an English excise tax mark, assuring the viewer of the origins and assumed high quality of Boardman's goods.
Signature: [at lower left]: R. Earl pinxt 1789
By descent, Cornelius Boardman Tyler, Plainfield, New Jersey, died 1955; Mrs. Cornelius Boardman (Susan W.) Tyler, Fairfield, New Jersey, died 1979
Related Objects

Esther Boardman

Artist: Ralph Earl (American, Worcester County, Massachusetts 1751–1801 Bolton, Connecticut) Date: 1789 Medium: Oil on canvas Accession: 1991.338 On view in:Gallery 755

Marinus Willett

Artist: Ralph Earl (American, Worcester County, Massachusetts 1751–1801 Bolton, Connecticut) Date: ca. 1791 Medium: Oil on canvas Accession: 17.87.1 On view in:Gallery 753

Mrs. Noah Smith and Her Children

Artist: Ralph Earl (American, Worcester County, Massachusetts 1751–1801 Bolton, Connecticut) Date: 1798 Medium: Oil on canvas Accession: 64.309.1 On view in:Gallery 755

Lady Williams and Child

Artist: Ralph Earl (American, Worcester County, Massachusetts 1751–1801 Bolton, Connecticut) Date: 1783 Medium: Oil on canvas Accession: 06.179 On view in:Gallery 774

Master Rees Goring Thomas

Artist: Attributed to Ralph Earl (American, Worcester County, Massachusetts 1751–1801 Bolton, Connecticut) Date: ca. 1783–84 Medium: Oil on canvas Accession: 15.30.35 On view in:Gallery 774