N04400 DAME MADGE KENDAL c. 1927–8
Inscr. ‘Orpen’ t.l.
Canvas, 40 1/4×34 1/4 (102×87); painted area 40×33 3/4 (101·5×86).
Presented by Dame Madge Kendal 1928.
Exh: R.A., 1928 (15); R.A., Late Members, winter 1933 (129); Manchester, April–May 1933 (56).
Lit: Konody and Dark, 1932, pp.222 and 274, repr. pl.61; St John Ervine in The Dictionary of National Biography, 1931–40, 1949, p.504.
Repr: Royal Academy Illustrated, 1928, p.34.
Madge Kendal, the actress (1848–1935), was one of a theatrical family, her father being an actor-manager and her brother Thomas William Robertson the author of Caste. She first appeared on the stage at the age of six in 1854 and retired in 1908. In 1869 she married the actor-manager William Hunter Kendal. She was made D.B.E. in 1926 and G.B.E. in 1927. This portrait, painted in her eightieth year, was presented to her by Sir Johnston Forbes-Robertson on behalf of a number of old friends.
Mary Chamot, Dennis Farr and Martin Butlin, The Modern British Paintings, Drawings and Sculpture, London 1964, II