This portrait of Helena Wertheimer is one of a series of twelve that Sargent painted of her family. Ten of these were bequeathed to the nation and are now in the Tate Collection. This one is unusually lively, and shows her wearing, as a joke, the Court dress of Lord Londonderry, which had been left in Sargent’s studio by another of his sitters. The portrait’s sub-title refers to her billowing cloak. The first of the Wertheimer family portraits was commissioned by Helena’s father, Asher, in 1898, and the rest followed at intervals.
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