GIRL WITH A BASKET OF FRUIT, circa 1785 Attributed to Abraham Delanoy, Jr., American (1742-1795)#2258
This portrait, early in date for an American portrait, gets its charm from the very characteristics that make it different from those which follow more English traditions of the period. The child's gaze is at the viewer (or the artist) and has a casual affect, not the more formal impression of English portraiture. She is posed in a three-quarter length standing pose, and her hands on the basket match the sensitivity seen in her gaze. Her red dress is trimmed in white lace, a costume seen in other works of children attributed to Delanoy.
The attribution of this painting to Abraham Delanoy, Jr. is made through stylistic comparisons with known Delanoy portraits of the family of John Sherman of Connecticut. The artist was previously referred to as the Sherman Limner, and the girl in the red dress is very similar stylistically to the portrait of David Austin Sherman. Two portraits of Sherman children are considered lost, and this may be one of them. There is no question that our young girl and the Sherman family portraits are by the same hand.
In the portrait of Mrs. Sherman there is a very similar basket that contains the same fruits: a bunch of white and blue grapes, and two peaches. Delanoy is considered to have been one of the most gifted painters practicing in the Colonies in the 1780's.
Please see DOCUMENTATION for complete condition report and publication references. Oil on canvas, 30 x 22 inches.
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