Art/ Collection/ Art Object

George Washington

Artist:
Adolph Ulrich Wertmuller (Stockholm 1751–1811 Naamans Creek, Delaware)
Date:
1795
Medium:
Oil on canvas
Dimensions:
25 3/4 x 21 1/8 in. (65.4 x 53.7 cm)
Classification:
Paintings
Credit Line:
Bequest of Charles Allen Munn, 1924
Accession Number:
24.109.82
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 774
The Swedish portraitist Wertmuller worked in Paris until the upheavals of the French Revolution drove him to Madrid and then Philadelphia. In early November 1794 he completed his first portrait of Washington, which he replicated many times. With its fussy lace ruff and powder-speckled coat, Wertmuller's portrayal of Washington was both admired and condemned. Some proclaimed it the finest likeness of the president, while others, who preferred the work of Peale, Stuart, and Trumbull, deemed it overly precious and not at all like him.
Signature: [at lower right]: A. Wertmuller, S. Pt. / Philadelphia 1795
Theophile Cazenove, Philadelphia and Paris, 1795–died 1811; his estate; Charles A. Davis, New York, by 1858–died 1867; his daughter, Madame Gentil; sale, Hotel Drouot, Paris, 1880; William F. Morgan, New York, 1880; Charles Allen Munn, West Orange, New Jersey, by died 1924
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