by Nathaniel Hone
oil on canvas, 1765
29 1/2 in. x 24 1/2 in. (749 mm x 622 mm)
Bequeathed by John Baring, 2nd Baron Revelstoke, 1929
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Sitterback to top
- Catherine Maria ('Kitty') Fisher (circa 1741-died 1767), Courtesan. Sitter associated with 11 portraits.
Artistback to top
- Nathaniel Hone (1718-1784), Portrait and miniature painter. Artist associated with 56 portraits, Sitter in 9 portraits.
This portraitback to top
Catherine Maria Fisher, a courtesan, was known for her beauty, wit and daring horsemanship. This picture would appear to be that exhibited at the Society of Artists in 1765 and described by the Public Advertiser as 'a portrait of a Lady whose charms are well known to the town. The painter has ingeniously attempted to acquaint us with her name by a rebus upon Canvass. By her side a Kitten (Kitty) is attempting to get into a basin of Gold Fish (Kitty Fisher)'. The reflection in the goldfish bowl of the crowd of people watching through the window is a striking comment on the nature of celebrity. More detailed information on this portrait is available in a National Portrait Gallery collection catalogue, John Kerslake's Early Georgian Portraits (1977, out of print).
Linked publicationsback to top
- Audio Guide
- Cooper, John, A Guide to the National Portrait Gallery, 2009, p. 31
- Gibson, Robin, The Face in the Corner: Animal Portraits from the Collections of the National Portrait Gallery, 1998, p. 44
- Kerslake, John, Early Georgian Portraits, 1977, p. 74
- Robin Gibson, Pets in Portraits, 2015, p. 73
- Saywell, David; Simon, Jacob, Complete Illustrated Catalogue, 2004, p. 218