Robert Henri (1865-1929) Portrait of Miss Mildred Sheridan 32 x 26in

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Lot 25
Robert Henri
(1865-1929)
Portrait of Miss Mildred Sheridan 32 x 26in

Sold

American Art

24 May 2017, 10:00 EDT

New York

Robert Henri (1865-1929)
Portrait of Miss Mildred Sheridan
signed and inscribed 'To my friend / John Sheridan Esq / Robert Henri' (lower right) and signed again, numbered '83 / i' and inscribed 'Portrait of Miss Mildred Sheridan / painted at "Corrymore" Achill Island / Sept. 1913 and presented to my / good friend John Sheridan esq / Robert Henri' (on the reverse)
oil on canvas
32 x 26in

Footnotes

  • Provenance
    The artist.
    Family of the sitter, gift of the above, 1913.
    By descent to the present owner.

    Exhibited
    London, Anglo-American Exposition, May-October 1914, p. 34, no. 202 (as Portrait of Miss Sheridan).

    Literature
    V.A. Leeds, From New York to Corrymore: Robert Henri and Ireland, Charlotte, North Carolina, 2011, p. 86, footnote 26.

    Robert Henri's portrait paintings remain the most celebrated and fondly admired of his oeuvre. Among the artist's extensive output in this genre, his work in Ireland is perhaps the most personal, as it is believed that the artist maintained a particular attraction to the locale due to his own Irish heritage as well as that of his second wife, Marjorie Henri. Therefore, it is of no surprise that Henri's first stay on Achill Island, Ireland, from July to October 1913, was one of the most productive periods of his career, during which he produced more than one hundred and forty paintings in oil, including the present work, Portrait of Miss Mildred Sheridan. (V.A. Leeds, From New York to Corrymore: Robert Henri and Ireland, Charlotte, North Carolina, 2011, p. 68)

    Portrait of Miss Mildred Sheridan, presents a figure in typical three-quarter format, recorded with expert detail. Her clothing is illustrated by bold vertical strokes, which define her striped sweater and smart blue tie. The colors seen in this portrait are cool shades of blue and gray, and a pale yellow that runs from her clothing through to her fair complexion. The artist treats the young woman with flashes of rosy pink on her lips and high on her cheeks. Portrait of Miss Mildred Sheridan is unique in that she does not share the same innocence and naivety of some of the artist's younger subjects, as evident in her wardrobe of a more formal fashion. There are hints that still remain of this shy young woman's youth as her hands hide buried in her pockets out of our view.

    John Sheridan, to whom the present work is dedicated, was a local of Achill Island and helped secure the Henris' tenancy at Corrymore, a substantial house where the family resided throughout their time on the island. This portrait of his then sixteen your old daughter, Mildred Sheridan, also known as Kiddo Sheridan, was painted on July 13th, 1913, and presented to John as a gift, a small token of Henri's gratitude for his assistance in helping with their settlement. (Ibid p. 86, footnote 26)

    Henri enjoyed his time living in Corrymore and wrote in his letters about how well suited the property was for his varied uses; it provided abundant natural light required for when he worked painting portrait models, and its scale allowed for a sizeable studio space along the front corridor of the home, which boasted open views of the cliffs below. After the artist first inhabited the island in 1913, he subsequently returned to the region throughout the 1920s and until his death in 1929.
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