Tilly Kettle
Young Man in a Fawn Coat c.1772–3

Artwork details

Tilly Kettle 1734 or 5–1786
Young Man in a Fawn Coat
Date c.1772–3
Medium Oil paint on canvas
Dimensions Support: 762 x 629 mm
Acquisition Bequeathed by Sir Claude Phillips 1925
Not on display

Display caption

The era of Sensibility saw some important changes in male costume. The bright colours and ostentatious decoration sometimes favoured in earlier years were now seen as being rather suspect, indicating a luxurious or effeminate character.

The ‘man of feeling’ would, by contrast, dress unostentatiously, in plain colours. A certain disregard for personal appearance was considered a sign of being preoccupied with better thoughts. The intense gaze which the painter had given to the unknown man in this portrait enhances this impression.

September 2004

About this artwork