Portrait by Henry Edridge of a Seated Woman that Wonderfully Captures the moment in time. That time is 1804. Signed and Dated

$906.88

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THE STORY - When I first saw that amazing face looking at me from an Auction Catalogue I was in awe, but is wasn't just for that face which is incredible but for the portrait as a whole, I adored the way it portrayed the interior room she sits in with a suggestion of a landscape through the window. The lady in the portrait is unidentified but to me she is strong and powerful with an unwavering gaze, she is dressed in the most wonderful attire for the day with lashings of lace and of course that splendid bonnet finished off with a truly magnificent bow. She sits upright in a grand chair holding loosely in one hand her spectacles whilst her other rests upon a large open book set upon a table. The Scene is set in front of a window from which we see a suggestion of the what are most likely to be magnificent grounds with the tops of trees in the distance. The portrait is executed with both pencil and wash on paper and is signed by Henry Edridge, dated 1804. The following quote I found from The Royal Collection Trust's website about Henry Edridge is I feel so incredibly appropriate for this portrait

"It is for small full-length portrait drawings that he is best known. These are as evocative of their period as are those by Ingres of sitters in early Nineteenth Century France or Rome."


HENRY EDRIDGE - Born in 1768 (Some references have the date as 1869) in Paddington London, he started his career as an apprentice to the Mezzotint Engraver William Pether, who I believe also under took miniature portraits. In 1784 he began studying at The Royal Academy Schools and was much admired by Joshua Reynolds who did buy some of Edridge's work. He became known as a highly talented miniaturist I believe painting both Nelson and the Prime Minister William Pitt. From the 1790s he moved away from miniatures, concentrating on full length portraits in pencil and wash with the sitter seated in an interior with a view of a landscape beyond. These portraits became very fashionable and desirable to the Aristocracy and in 1803 he portrayed King George III who was shown in his portrait standing in front of Windsor Castle.

PROVENANCE - The Portrait is from the Arnold Fellows Collection and on the back of the frame there is some faded script which I believe reads 'Henry Edridge A.R.A 1769-1821. Portrait of a Seated Woman 1804. Arnold Fellows Collection No 182'. Arnold Fellows was a School Teacher who collected art throughout his life. On his death his whole collection was donated to Queen Mary's Grammar School in Walsall where he was a pupil between 1911-1917. I believe it is likely that is was Arnold Fellows who framed this portrait as the frame is much younger than the portrait. The frame is a simple gilt wooden one and I think works well with the portrait.

AGE - 1804

CONDITION - The portrait is in good condition. The paper has obviously yellowed and darkened with age and there is a small fox mark on her chin just above her collar which can best be seen in the fifth photo. There are some white areas to the portrait which are around the window area which can be seen in the third photo. The frame is in good condition with wear to the gilt which I have to say I rather like. There is no string or wire to hang if from on the back but there are two rings. I am going to leave it to the portrait's new owner to decide how they want to hang the portrait.

DIMENSIONS (Approx) - Framed - Height 14" / 35.5cm, Width 10" / 26cm, Depth 3/4" / 2cm. Image Size - Height 12&1/2" / 32cm, Width 8&3/4" / 22cm

Ever since my eyes first fell upon this portrait, I cannot help thinking that the strength of this good Woman's gaze must have been quite intimidating for Mr Edridge whilst he executed her portrait, but I guess he was used to painting more intimidating people than my lady, after all he did portray King George III but I am pretty certain not one of his sitters could compete with the gaze of of this dear lady. I know she is not young, I know she is not classically beautiful, but I don't care, to me she is magnificent and so is her portrait.

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