The Letter

Thomas Wilmer Dewing American

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 774

Boston-born and Paris-trained Thomas Wilmer Dewing is known as an "artist’s artist," given the lifetime appeal of his refined work to a select audience. In "The Letter," Dewing embraces his favorite theme—a contemplative woman in a genteel environment. The work’s aesthetic quietism has many sources: the intimate interiors of the Dutch Old Master Jan Vermeer; the formal arrangements of Japanese prints; and the simplified pictorial design and limited palette of the American expatriate James McNeill Whistler. "The Letter" retains its elaborate original frame—designed by Dewing’s close friend, the architect Stanford White—as do the other paintings on this wall.

The Letter, Thomas Wilmer Dewing (American, 1851–1938), Oil on canvas, American

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