Joshua Reynolds / The Ladies Amabel and Mary Jemima Yorke / c. 1761Joshua Reynolds
The Ladies Amabel and Mary Jemima Yorke
c. 1761

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Creator Name: Reynolds, Joshua
Creator Nationality: European; British
Creator Role: Artist
Creator Dates/Places: 1723 - 1792
Gender: M
Creator Name-CRT: Joshua Reynolds
Title: The Ladies Amabel and Mary Jemima Yorke
Title Type: Primary
View: Full View
Creation Start Date: 1756
Creation End Date: 1766
Creation Date: c. 1761
Object Type: Paintings
Materials and Techniques: oil on canvas
Dimensions: Unframed: 196cm x 170cm
AMICA Contributor: The Cleveland Museum of Art
Owner Location: Cleveland, Ohio, USA
ID Number: 1942.645
Credit Line: Bequest of John L. Severance
Provenance: Lord Royston, London, to Amabel Yorke (later Baroness Lucas), be descent (London sale 1922); (Knoedler, 1922)
Context: Lady Amabel Yorke, on the left, was born in 1751, and her sister, Mary Jemima, in 1756. Both are perhaps portrayed on the grounds of their family?s estate, Wrest Park, in Bedfordshire. A dated print after this painting (see photo), along with a recorded payment to the artist, suggests that this impressive yet tender portrait was painted in 1761. The print also indicates that the painting may have been cut at the top, as it clearly depicts a complete sphinx adorned with garlands atop the stone wall at the left.Joshua Reynolds (who was knighted in 1769) strove to improve the status of the artist within British society. He also wanted to raise the art of portraiture to the level of history painting by adding references to the ancient Greco-Roman past. In this painting that goal is reflected by the two girls holding doves, an image that relates to a classical statue of the same subject, which was interpreted as an allegory of protection. Here, Mary Jemima guards her dove from the playful dog.
AMICA ID: CMA_.1942.645
AMICA Library Year: 2000
Media Metadata Rights: Copyright, The Cleveland Museum of Art

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