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American history
visual arts

The Painter's Chair: George Washington and the Making of American Art

Hugh Howard.
Publisher Bloomsbury  
Format hardcover
Product Dimensions 9.5 x 6.3 x 1.15 inches
ISBN 9781596912441
Pages/Publication Date 297/2009
Daedalus Item Code 41011
This item is not available.
In 1732, when George Washington was born, the New World had virtually no fine artists. Yet over the course of his life and career, a cultural transformation occurred, and nowhere is it more evident than in the images of the great man himself. "I am so hackneyed to the touches of the painters pencil, that I am now altogether at their beck," noted Washington in his 50s. "No dray moves more readily to the Thill, than I do to the Painters Chair." Jefferson biographer Hugh Howard brings to life the founding fathers of American painting, and the elusive Washington himself, through the history of their portraits. We meet Charles Willson Peale, the comrade-in-arms; John Trumbull, the aristocrat; Benjamin West, the mentor; and Gilbert Stuart, the brilliant wastrel and most gifted painter of his day. Their Washingtons, and those of other portraitists, are included here among 24 color plates.

"Howard illuminates Washington as an eminent patron of emerging American artists, who fostered nothing less than the birth of American painting. He also insightfully documents how Washington's evolving public image and often inscrutable character were diversely revealed by some of the most eminent visual artists of the 18th century, many of whose images propelled Washington's iconic status."Publishers Weekly

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