Self-portrait by Edward Collier, oil on canvas, 1683 © National Portrait Gallery, London

Queries

Upload your illustrated queries about a portrait’s attribution, sitter identity, condition or provenance, and take part in the online discussions.

Seeking advice on portrait dating and costume

A query from Valence House Museum: This portrait is described as Mrs Mary Linsdell (b.1805) and her daughter Annie (b.1841) and was donated in 1942 by Annie’s son-in-law. Annie was the fifth child and third daughter of Mary and her husband Thomas. The portrait is by John Robert Wildman – portrait, landscape, historical and animal […]

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Partners: Art Detective

Art Detective aims to improve knowledge of the UK’s public art collection. It is a free-to-use online network that connects public art collections with members of the public and providers of specialist knowledge. Launched in March 2014, Art Detective comprises a digital network built on top of the Public Catalogue Foundation’s (PCF) existing art object […]

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Updates to fashionable coiffures

Independent researcher Kimberly Chrisman-Campbell has posed the following query. “I’m looking for 18th-century portraits that have had their hairstyles repainted; frequently, the very large coiffures fashionable for women in the 1770s and 1780s were either added or effaced. Romney’s c. 1780s portrait of Mrs. Andrew Reid from the Kimbell Art Museum with a hairstyle of […]

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Advice on artist attribution and date sought

Valence House Museum has submitted the following query: “This portrait has been given to us on loan for identification. Nothing is known about this portrait other than a suggestion that it may show Lady Ann Fanshawe (1625-1680). However, we do not believe this to be correct. Any suggestions regarding execution date and artist would be […]

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Advice on artist attribution and date sought

Valence House Museum has submitted the following query: “The attached portrait has been given to us on loan for identification. A handwritten note on the reverse suggests that it is of Elizabeth Fanshawe, née Cockayne (1609-1667/8) by Sir Peter Lely. In 1629 Elizabeth became the 2nd wife of Viscount Fanshawe. We would like to clarify […]

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Dom Pedro I of Brazil by Calixto – query on the depiction of gloves

“I’m trying to decipher a detail in a Dom Pedro I (1798-1834) portrait, done by Brazilian artist Benedito Calixto, belonging to Museu Paulista Collection. I am familiar with the uses of gloves in traditional portraits, but I cannot find any precedent for this particular display of the gloves, put between the jacket’s buttons. The portrait […]

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Portrait of a naval officer by Allan Ramsay

The sitter in this Allan Ramsay portrait of 1741 may be a naval officer  – can you assist the McLean Museum & Art Gallery in identifying his rank him ? Please register your comments on the Art Detective website here >>

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Pendant portraits at Valence House Museum

Acquired by Valence House Museum in 1972, very little is known about these two portraits. The sitters are wearing mid-17th century clothing and the portraits seem to form a pair. The paintings have been removed from their stretchers and appear to have undergone conservation at some point, possibly following fire damage. Any suggestions as to […]

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Portrait of a Lady – artist attributions sought

This portrait in an American private collection was purchased at auction with the following cataloguing: ‘Portrait of a Lady, possibly Mrs. William Wilson, neé Miss Caroline Fry (1787-1846), early 19th c., circle of Sir Thomas Lawrence, oil on canvas, unsigned, 36 in. x 29 in., in inner liner of original frame. The sitter depicted here […]

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Portrait of a Lady, c.1825

In 1970 this portrait was exhibited by the Sabin Galleries as the work of John Constable. The picture was acquired as such by the Art Gallery of New South Wales (acc no 29.1971), but the attribution was rejected by Renée Free in her 1987 catalogue. A plausible attribution has yet to be found. A date […]

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Queries & Reviews

Submit your portrait query for other members, or post an illustrated case study, review, or research paper.