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19th Century Gallery

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The Letter

19th Century
29 1/2 x 24 1/2 in. (74.9 x 62.2 cm)

Maria Brooks, American, born in England, (1837–1913)

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: 07-P-529
Gallery Label:

Brooks is known primarily for her oil portraits and flower paintings. She studied at the South Kensington and Royal Academy Schools in London before opening a studio in Montreal, then moving to New York. The artist had a knack for evoking emotions from her subjects. The Quarterly Illustrator (1893) quoted her as telling one sitter, “You have a hundred faces… Now we will talk awhile until you get around to the one I want.”

Exhibition reviews in the Montreal Gazette (April 1885) titled this painting “Far, Far Away” because, “It is that of a young girl, who, having just read a letter from her sailor lover, is thinking tenderly of him, and it can be seen at a glance that she is regretting that he is so far, far away.” Also, Goupil & Co., who printed photogravures of this work, titled it “I Wonder if He Really Means It.”

Emily Levy, '12
Curatorial Intern
Current Location: Art Museum : 19 C Gallery

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