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Portrait of Mrs. Nathan Button, Charlotte Pomeroy

Waldo, Samuel Lovett

Portrait of Mrs. Nathan Button, Charlotte Pomeroy

oil on wood

1986 Purchase funded by The Collectors Club

This painting is part of a pair of portraits of husband and wife, Mr. Nathan Button and Mrs. Charlotte Button. The subject is lushly painted in formal attire typical of the period. The artist captured the rich sheen of light upon her dark hair and her satin dress. The delicate details of lace are carefully painted. The lightness of her face and hands and the collar of the dress strongly contrast with the dark background. The background contains elements that indicate the wealth of the sitter -- rich, heavy drapery against a window and a fashionable settee upon which she sits.

This portrait, and the accompanying portrait "Mr. Nathan Button" are typical of the best paintings by Waldo & Jewett. Portraits were in popular demand in America from the 18th century through the 19th century. Samuel Waldo studied painting in Connecticut and opened his first studio in Hartford. From 1806 to 1808 he studied in London. Upon his return to the United States, he opened a studio in New York City where his student, William Jewett, ground pigments. Waldo eventually promoted Jewett to a partner and their studio experienced 30 years of success until 1854. Waldo and Jewett collaborated on the portraits of many prominent New Yorkers. Waldo specialized in faces and hands while Jewett specialized in clothing and backgrounds.