Monday, May 12, 2014

Painting of the Day: A Portrait Miniature of an Unknown Lady in Blue, c. 1907

The Victoria & Albert Museum

Miniature portraits have been a part of the art history of England for centuries.   Here, we see a miniature of unknown middle-aged woman with upswept brown hair and brown eyes. Thought to have been painted around 1907, the sitter wears a patterned gown of blue, green and pink and poses against a pale green background.

This is the work of Rosalie Emslie, (born 1854 - died 1932).  It was given, along with ten other miniatures, to the V&A by Geoffrey, Chloë and Emma Salter in memory of Miss Rosalie Emslie, the daughter of the artist.

The miniature painter, Rosalie Emslie (also known at the time as Mrs Alfred E. Emslie), is recorded in Daphne Foskett's “A Dictionary of British Miniature Painters,”  as “a prolific artist [with] a distinguished clientele.”   

According to the V&A. 

“On the Departmental File for these miniatures is a copy of The Crown magazine for May 25th, 1907, which on page 355 in a section called 'The Art Galleries', noted that at 'The New Gallery' there was on display a 'case of miniatures by Mrs Emslie, photos of which appear on this page [6 were illustrated]. Mrs. Rosalie M. Emslie, better known as Mrs. A. E. Emslie, wife of Mr. Alfred E. Emslie, A.R.W.S., studied at the RA, and is represented there this year by miniatures of Miss Ines Pini, Miss Ada Clarke, Rosalie Emslie [presumably her daughter], and Madame Melba. Her style is very delicate and refined, and the melting tones recall the beautiful work of Cosway. She takes her rightful place among our leading miniaturists...’”

No comments: