George Washington, ca. 1790
Charles Peale Polk (American, 1767–1822)
Oil on canvas; 21 3/4 x 17 7/8 in. (55.2 x 45.4 cm)
Bequest of Charles Allen Munn, 1924 (24.109.81)
Polk used his uncle Charles Willson Peale's so-called Convention portrait as the basis for this image; Peale painted the original portrait from life at the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia in 1787. Polk portrayed Washington numerous times from various sources but never from life. In 1790, Polk wrote to Washington requesting a sitting and stating that he had executed fifty portraits of him during the previous year.