Portrait of Diana Mary Barker. Young woman turned three-quarters toward the spectator, with dark eyes straight ahead, raises left hand to pick a small pink flower growing in a pot; in the other, she holds some pink roses. Blue and gold striped ribbon, barely discernible, wound about dark hair. Fair complexion, aquiline nose. Greyish-tan dress, full elbow-length sleeves and undersleeves caught up with pearls and blue ribbon. Grey and gold striped scarf draped around neck; blue and gold striped belt with gold fringe. Double strand of pearls caught loosely about base of throat.

Portrait of Diana Mary Barker, 1766

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Benjamin West wanted to make a name for himself as a painter of grand historical pictures, but he first rose to international prominence as a portraitist. This painting, done three years after West settled in London, reveals the artist's debt to Sir Joshua Reynolds. The careful modeling, high degree of finish and smooth surface, and the elegant pose and setting reflect the neoclassical manner of Reynolds currently in vogue. The sitter, seventeen-year-old Lady Diana Mary Barker, resided at Speen House in Berkshire, England.

Details
Title
Portrait of Diana Mary Barker
Artist Life
(active Britain), 1738 - 1820
Role
Artist
Accession Number
31.39
Catalogue Raisonne
von Erffa and Staley: 588.
Curator Approved

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Portrait of Diana Mary Barker. Young woman turned three-quarters toward the spectator, with dark eyes straight ahead, raises left hand to pick a small pink flower growing in a pot; in the other, she holds some pink roses. Blue and gold striped ribbon, barely discernible, wound about dark hair. Fair complexion, aquiline nose. Greyish-tan dress, full elbow-length sleeves and undersleeves caught up with pearls and blue ribbon. Grey and gold striped scarf draped around neck; blue and gold striped belt with gold fringe. Double strand of pearls caught loosely about base of throat.