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

Saturday, July 31, 2021

Don José Mas Ferrer

This portrait of Don José Mas Ferrer by José Campeche y Jordán from about 1795 hangs in the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, DC. 

Terry Muse gives us the low-down on this painting.
Although Campeche never left the island of Puerto Rico, he became the most notable Caribbean painter of the eighteenth century and received commissions from throughout the region. He painted this portrait, which shows Mas Ferrer dressed in the uniform of the Royal Exchequer, for the government of Spain. Standing in an elegant interior, Mas Ferrer is presented as a man of influence. The letter on the floor addressed “To the gentleman José Mas Ferrer, Auditor Elect of the Province and City of Popayán” indicates his prestigious appointment as overseer of the tobacco trade between Popayán (now Colombia) and Holland. 

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