3 of 92 portraits by George Frederic Watts
- Extended catalogue entry
Early Victorian Portraits Catalogue
by George Frederic Watts
24 in. x 20 in. (610 mm x 508 mm)
Inscriptionback to top
Inscribed on a label on the back in the artist's hand (referring to the RA exhibition): No 3. Thomas Wright/of Manchester/G. F. Watts/30 Charles Street/Berkeley Square
This portraitback to top
This drawing was used by Watts for the head of the 'Good Samaritan' in his second version of the picture of this title (Watts Gallery, Compton). The first version, which is similar in composition, but shows a different model, is in the City Art Gallery, Manchester, exhibited RA, 1850 (408), presented by the artist to Manchester in the same year as a token of his admiration for Wright.  Sometime after the presentation, Wright visited the artist's studio, 'bringing Mr Watts a thank-offering of six pocket-handkerchiefs. He also gave him the great pleasure of hearing that the presentation of that picture, having called attention to his [Wright's] work, had been already of great service to him. Seeing that the head of Wright was remarkable in its refined and spiritual beauty, he asked if it was possible for him to give a sitting of an hour or so; with the result that a drawing in black and red chalk - now in its place in the National Portrait Gallery - was made in the Charles Street studio, and there Wright is niched amongst men who have made their mark.' (M. S. Watts, I, 130-1).
Footnotesback to top
Referenceback to top
[Mrs] M. S. Watts, George Frederic Watts (1912), I, 130-1.
Provenanceback to top
The artist, presented by him, 1895.
Exhibitionsback to top
RA, 1851 (1167); Winter Exhibition, Grosvenor Gallery, 1880 (390).
This extended catalogue entry is from the out-of-print National Portrait Gallery collection catalogue: Richard Ormond, Early Victorian Portraits, Her Majesty's Stationery Office, 1973, and is as published then. For the most up-to-date details on individual Collection works, we recommend reading the information provided in the Search the Collection results on this website in parallel with this text.
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