William Powell Frith (English, 1819-1909). Oil on canvas painting titled "L'Adieu de Marie Stuart," depicting Mary Queen of Scots as she bids farewell to France after the death of her husband, ca. 1898. With a label from Thomas McLean (British, 1788-1875), a print seller and publisher as well as purveyor of fine art in London in the 19th century. Further labels from Kurt E. Schon, Ltd. Fine Art.
Exhibition: Royal Academy, 1893, No. 178.
Provenance: Thomas McLean, London, 19th c.; Kurt E. Schon, Ltd., New Orleans, November 3, 1993; Private Minnesota Collection.
William Powell Frith RA (9 January 1819-2 November 1909) was an English painter specializing in genre subjects and panoramic narrative works of life in the Victorian era. He was elected to the Royal Academy in 1853, presenting "The Sleeping Model" as his Diploma work. He has been described as the "greatest British painter of the social scene since Hogarth".
William Powell Frith was born in Aldfield, near Ripon in North Yorkshire on 9 January 1819. Frith was encouraged to take up art by his father, a hotelier in Harrogate. Frith was the great uncle and an advisor to the English school portrait painter Henry Keyworth Raine (1872-1932).
He moved to London in 1835 where he began his formal art studies at Sass's Academy in Charlotte Street, before attending the Royal Academy Schools. Frith started his career as a portrait painter and first exhibited at the British Institution in 1838. In the 1840s he often based works on the literary output of writers such as Charles Dickens, whose portrait he painted, and Laurence Sterne.
Unframed; height: 35 in x width: 35 in. Framed; height: 46 in x width: 46 in.
The painting has been heavily restored and extensive inpainting is visible under UV light, see lot listing photo. There is white paint accretion along the figure's cheek, visible in the lot listing. There is a long light scuff the runs horizontally just above the figure's head. The work has been relined. Wear to the frame, some minute losses. Some small losses to the gilding.
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