Washington Allston / Samuel Williams / c. 1817Washington Allston
Samuel Williams
c. 1817

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Creator Name: Allston, Washington
Creator Nationality: North American; American
Creator Role: Artist
Creator Dates/Places: 1779 - 1843
Gender: M
Creator Name-CRT: Washington Allston
Title: Samuel Williams
Title Type: Primary
View: Full View
Creation Start Date: 1812
Creation End Date: 1827
Creation Date: c. 1817
Object Type: Paintings
Classification Term: Painting
Materials and Techniques: oil on canvas
Dimensions: Unframed: 142.2cm x 111.8cm
AMICA Contributor: The Cleveland Museum of Art
Owner Location: Cleveland, Ohio, USA
ID Number: 1965.474
Credit Line: Mr. and Mrs. William H. Marlatt Fund
Rights: http://www.clemusart.com/museum/disclaim2.html
Provenance: Family of the sitter, Boston; Mr. and Mrs. Lawrence Fleischman, Detroit (Kennedy Galleries, New York)

Whether Allston was at home in Boston or on one of his two extended trips to Europe, the art world of his day regarded him as America's foremost proponent of Romantic painting. Along with his visionary landscapes and scenes from literature, his portraits also make statements about the workings of the imagination. Although Samuel Williams (died 1841) was a merchant and a banker, this canvas suggests nothing about his professional life. Instead, the painter made this portrait commission an opportunity to explore the experience of revery. Williams looks off absently into his chamber, apparently inspired by the pictures in his illustrated book. With its view of an Italianate landscape beyond the columns of this invented setting, the paintng invites its viewers to join the sitter in dreaming about far-away places.

AMICA ID: CMA_.1965.474
AMICA Library Year: 2002
Media Metadata Rights: Copyright, The Cleveland Museum of Art

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