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Campus History & Peale Family

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Portrait of Helena Lawrence Holmes Penington (1769-1852)

19th Century
19th Century
24 x 17 1/2 in. (61 x 44.5 cm)

Attributed to Sarah Miriam Peale, American, (1800–1885)

Object Type: PAINTINGS
Creation Place: North America
Medium and Support: Oil on canvas
Credit Line: Purchased with funds provided by the Art Angels
Accession Number: 15-P-585
Gallery Label:

Born in Philadelphia, Sarah Miriam Peale along with her sisters, Margaretta Angelica and Anna Claypoole Peale trained as artists under the tutelage of their father, James Peale, serving as his apprentices. Sarah was known for her portraiture and still-life paintings. She moved to Baltimore for instruction in oil painting and glazing techniques and remained there for 20 years before moving to St. Louis where she was commissioned by various families. She is regarded by many as the first woman in the United States to achieve professional recognition as an artist. In 1824, Sarah and Anna became the first two female members of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts.

This portrait was probably painted by Sarah at a young age, and was possibly painted together with Anna and instruction from their father.
Current Location: Art Museum : 19 C Gallery

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