James Tissot

Study after Reynolds’ Portrait of Mrs Williams Hope


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
James Tissot 1836–1902
Graphite on paper
Support: 121 × 67 mm
Bequeathed by J.R. Holliday 1927

Catalogue entry

James Tissot 1836-1902

N04294 Study after Reynolds' Portrait of Mrs Williams Hope c.1872

Not inscribed
Pencil on paper, 4 3/4 x 2 5/8 (12 x 6.5)
Bequeathed by J.R. Holliday 1927
Prov: [?Charles Fairfax Murray, London]; J.R. Holliday, Birmingham

This is a quick sketch of the figure in the portrait of Mrs Williams Hope by Reynolds, painted in 1787. It was probably done from an engraving.

In the first year or two after his arrival in this country, Tissot painted several pictures with figures in late 18th century English costume, such as 'The Parting' (National Museum of Wales, Cardiff), 'An Interesting Story' (National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne) and 'How We read the News of our Marriage' (present whereabouts unknown). 'The Parting' and 'How We read the News of our Marriage' are both dated 1872, while 'An Interesting Story', which is undated, was exhibited that same year at the Royal Academy. In all of these, mob caps are a prominent feature of the women's attire. It would seem that Tissot improved his knowledge of the fashions by studying contemporary portraits.

Published in:
Ronald Alley, Catalogue of the Tate Gallery's Collection of Modern Art other than Works by British Artists, Tate Gallery and Sotheby Parke-Bernet, London 1981, p.718, reproduced p.718

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