"Silhouette Portrait of a Gentleman"
John Miers (1756–1821)
Watercolour on card
Fragment of Miers's original trade label verso
English, Circa 1815
8 cm high x 6.3 cm wide (oval)
15.8 cm x 13.7 cm (framed)
A strong profile portrait of a gentleman facing right by John Miers (1756–1821), one of the most famous of the late 18th/early 19th Century silhouette artists.
The original frame with an additional engine turned gilt-metal slip, retains a fragment of Miers's original trade label, confirming the artist who created the image. The sitter has not been identified but the frame's integral hanger incorporates the motif of fouled anchor and scallop shell, perhaps suggesting that it is a portrait of a naval officer (indeed, he bears a passing resemblance to a young Capt. Hardy).
For notes on the artist see p.128-130 (plus various illustrations), Mrs. E. Nevill Jackson, "Silhouette: Notes & Dictionary", London, Methuen & Co Ltd, 1938
For a description of Miers's work see p.83, 103 etc, Emma Rutherford & Lulu Guinness, "Silhouette, The Art of The Shadow", New York, Rizzoli, 2009.
For a silhouette by John Field (who worked for John Miers) of Admiral Lord Nelson in the Lidstone Collection, incorporating the same fouled anchor and scallop hanger see plate 81; p.85 Emma Rutherford "Silhouette, The Art of The Shadow", New York, Rizzoli, 2009.
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