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John Singer Sargent letters

Creator:
Sargent, John Singer, 1856-1925  Search this
Names:
Blaney, Edith H.  Search this
Hunter, Charles, Mrs.  Search this
Extent:
0.2 Linear feet ((104 letters))
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Date:
1887-1922
Summary:
The John Singer Sargent letters consist of 104 letters dating from 1887 to 1922. The letters provide limited insight into his later career through letters to commissioned patrons, sitters, and friends and colleagues. Topics covered include works in progress, replies to social invitations, and other general social news. Many of the letters are written to Mrs. Charles Hunter, an English friend and patron who sat for several portraits. Also found are letters from Sargent to friend Edith Blaney, whose husband was landscape artist Dwight Blaney. Additional scattered letters were written to Henry Mills Alden, Lawrence Barrett, Mrs. Baxter, a Mr. Griffith, Sir George Hunter, Mrs. Jackson, Louisa P. Loring, Henry Gurdon Marquand, Mrs. Pick, Mr. Spizer, and unidentified/illegible recepients. There are two photographs of Sargent.
Scope and Content Note:
The John Singer Sargent letters consist of 104 letters dating from 1887 to 1922. The letters provide limited insight into his later career through letters to commissioned patrons, sitters, and friends and colleagues. Topics covered include works in progress, replies to social invitations, and other general social news. Many of the letters are written to Mrs. Charles Hunter, an English friend and patron who sat for several portraits. Also found are letters from Sargent to friend Edith Blaney, whose husband was landscape artist Dwight Blaney. Additional scattered letters were written to Henry Mills Alden, Lawrence Barrett, Mrs. Baxter, a Mr. Griffith, Sir George Hunter, Mrs. Jackson, Louisa P. Loring, Henry Gurdon Marquand, Mrs. Pick, Mr. Spizer, and unidentified/illegible recepients. There are two photographs of Sargent.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged into 1 series:

Missing Title

Series 1: John Singer Sargent Letters, 1887-1922 (Box 1; 0.2 linear feet)

Due to the small size of this collection, the letters are arranged alphabetically by name of correspondent into one series of 18 folders. Items within each folder are arranged chronologically .
Biographical Note:
John Singer Sargent (1856-1925) was born in Florence, Italy to American Parents, Dr. Fitzwilliam Sargent and Mary Newbold Singer Sargent of Philadelphia. During his childhood the family traveled Europe extensively, often spending summers in Switzerland and winters in Italy. Sargent began drawing and painting at an early age, helping in the studio of Carl Welsch in 1868, attending the Accademia delle Belle Arti in Florence in 1873, studying at Carolus-Duran's atelier and the studio of James Carroll Beckwith and finally attending the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in 1875. Sargent quickly gained recognition for his paintings, receiving honors for his works at the Salon and the Society of American Artists. During this period he visited the studios of many prominent artists working in Europe, including John Everett Millais, Frederic Leighton, and Claude Monet and also became friends with Henry James.

Influenced by Frans Hals and Velazquez, Sargent became a very successful portrait painter, acquiring many French patrons and later even more American clients. His most famous work, Mme Gautreau, known as 'Madame X', was denounced by the Salon in 1884 for its provocative modernism. After this scandal he moved from Paris to London, and in 1887 visited the United States, where he was treated as a celebrity. He visited again in 1890 and established studios in New York and Boston, in addition to his studio in London. He also accepted a commission to do a series of murals in the Boston Public Library which wasn't completed and installed until 1916. In 1891 he traveled to Egypt, Greece, and Turkey - travels that inspired his later paintings. By 1900 Sargent was the leading society portrait painter on an international level and was known for using modern styles of lighting, poses, and settings. In addition to many other honors he became a full member of the Royal Academy in London and the National Academy of Design in New York.

In 1907 Sargent decided to give up his portrait studios and focus on murals and landscape studies. In 1918 he became a war artist for the Ministry of Information and in 1924 had his first retrospective exhibition at Grand Central Art Galleries in New York. Sargent remained unmarried and died in his sleep in 1925 at the age of 69.
Related Material:
Related collections available at the Archives of American Art include the F. W. Sargent papers (John Singer Sargent's father), which include correspondence with his son, available on reel D317. Also found is the R. L. Ormond material relating to John Singer Sargent, available on microfilm reels 1407 and 1820, and "Recollections of John Singer Sargent," a typescript and recording of an interview of Sargent's model Anton Kamp, available on microfilm reel 5002. Other collections were loaned to the Archives of American Art for microfilming and returned to the owner, including the Charles Jackson Paine letters from John Singer Sargent, available on reel 2542, and the John Singer Sargent letter to Mrs. Henry White, available on reel 647.
Provenance:
42 of the letters were given to the Archives by Charles E. Feinberg in 1956 and purchased from King V. Hostick, an autograph dealer, in 1957. A few additional letters in the possession of Charles E. Feinberg were sold at auction and purchased by the Archives of American Art in 1968. Circa 60 letters from Sargent to Mrs. Charles Hunter were donated by Elizabeth Williamson, daughter of Mrs. Charles Hunter, in 1964. All accessions were microfilmed shortly after receipt.
Restrictions:
The collection has been digitized and is available online via AAA's website.
Rights:
The Archives of American Art makes its archival collections available for non-commercial, educational and personal use unless restricted by copyright and/or donor restrictions, including but not limited to access and publication restrictions. AAA makes no representations concerning such rights and restrictions and it is the user's responsibility to determine whether rights or restrictions exist and to obtain any necessary permission to access, use, reproduce and publish the collections. Please refer to the Smithsonian's Terms of Use for additional information.
Topic:
Portrait painters -- England -- London  Search this
Art -- Commissioning  Search this
Art patronage  Search this
Citation:
John Singer Sargent letters, 1887-1922. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.sargjohn
See more items in:
John Singer Sargent letters
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw9d011388b-6829-47cb-9b08-5678734663a9
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-sargjohn
Online Media:

John Singer Sargent letters, 1887-1922

Creator:
Sargent, John Singer, 1856-1925  Search this
Subject:
Hunter, Charles, Mrs.  Search this
Blaney, Edith H.  Search this
Topic:
Portrait painters -- England -- London  Search this
Art -- Commissioning  Search this
Art patronage  Search this
Theme:
American Art and Artists in a Global Context  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)9061
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)211253
AAA_collcode_sargjohn
Theme:
American Art and Artists in a Global Context
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_211253
Online Media:

Mrs. Charles Hunter, (painting)

Painter:
Sargent, John Singer 1856-1925  Search this
Subject:
Hunter, Charles, Mrs. (Mary Smyth)  Search this
Medium:
Oil on canvas
Type:
Paintings
Owner/Location:
Tate Gallery Millbank London England SW1P 4RG Accession Number: 4469
Date:
1898
Topic:
Portrait female--Knee length  Search this
Dress--Accessory--Hat  Search this
Control number:
IAP 81690238
Data Source:
Art Inventories Catalog, Smithsonian American Art Museums
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_ari_215313

Mrs. Charles Hunter, (painting)

Painter:
Sargent, John Singer 1856-1925  Search this
Subject:
Hunter, Charles, Mrs. (Mary Smyth)  Search this
Medium:
Watercolor and pencil
Type:
Paintings
Date:
1902
Topic:
Portrait female--Waist length  Search this
Dress--Accessory--Hat  Search this
Waterscape--Boat  Search this
Control number:
IAP 81690239
Data Source:
Art Inventories Catalog, Smithsonian American Art Museums
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_ari_215314

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