Benjamin West

Lady Beauchamp-Proctor

1778

Artist
Benjamin West 1738–1820
Medium
Oil paint on canvas
Dimensions
Support: 1264 x 1003 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Presented by the daughters of Maj-Gen. G.E.H. Beauchamp through the Art Fund 1941
Reference
N05265

Not on display

Display caption

Like many grand portraits of women in the eighteenth century, this picture was commissioned to mark the sitter’s marriage. She is Mary Palmer (1760-1848), who married Sir Thomas Beauchamp-Proctor in March 1778 (his portrait can be seen on the other end of this wall). She is shown decorating a statue of Hymen, the Roman god of marriage, with flowers. These classical references and her richly painted costume are meant to evoke the noble art of the past. Her hair, however, is piled high in the fashion of the day.

Gallery label, February 2010

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