"A portrait is a picture in which there is just a tiny little something not quite right about the mouth." -- John Singer Sargent

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Thomas Jefferson

This portrait of Thomas Jefferson by Mather Brown hangs in the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, DC.
"By his own instruction, Thomas Jefferson's tombstone notes his authorship of the Declaration of Independence, his founding of the University of Virginia, and his responsibility for Virginia's Statute of Religious Freedom. But it fails to mention his presidency. That omission, however, does not mean that his administration lacked significance. On the contrary, Jefferson's White House tenure marked one of this country's greatest territorial acquisitions, the Louisiana Purchase. Under his leadership, the country also stood its ground against interference from Africa's Barbary Coast pirate states in the American-Mediterranean trade. Unfortunately, these successes were eclipsed
my the popular wrath resulting from the disastrous implementation of a trade embargo designed to curb British and French infringements on this country's shipping.

The earliest known portrait of Jefferson, this likeness is one of two versions derived from sittings with artist Mather Brown in London in 1786, during Jefferson's tenure as American minister to France. This version was part of a portrait exchange between Jefferson and John Adams and symbolized their warm friendship." -- National Portrait Gallery
M Brown pt. 1786

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