Artist: John Russell (British, Guildford 1745–1806 Hull)
Medium: Pastel on paper, laid down on canvas
Dimensions: 23 7/8 x 17 3/4 in. (60.6 x 45.1 cm)
Classification: Pastels & Oil Sketches on Paper
Credit Line: Gift of Geoffrey Shurlock, 1967
Accession Number: 67.132
The sitters are John Russell’s daughter, Henrietta (1775–1849), and his first granddaughter, Ann. Henrietta was the sixth of the artist’s twelve children but the oldest to survive to maturity, and in 1800 she married Robert Shurlock of Chertsey, which was near Russell’s residence in Guildford, Surrey. This portrait was likely begun around the time of the marriage. Here the young mother, wearing an elegant white gown and a cap and shawl made of gauzy fabrics, cradles her infant. An inscription on a label on the reverse states that Russell added the child to the composition at a later date, which explains the unusual length of the mother’s right forearm.