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Jonathan Richardson, the elder (1665 - 1745)

Chalk (black and white) on paper (blue)

Height: 48.3 cm; Width: 30.5 cm;

Acquisition (source, method, date)
Witt, Robert Clermont (Sir); bequest; 1952

About this work
This is perhaps the first self-portrait drawing Richardson made. He regards his reflection in the mirror appraisingly, one eye-brow slightly raised.

Richardson used rough blue paper for most of his chalk self-portraits, which at the time was the cheapest sort, often used for wrapping goods such as sugar. It also had the advantage of providing a mid-tone which allowed him to create subtle effects with black chalk and white highlights. (Permanent collection label)

Copyright: © The Samuel Courtauld Trust, The Courtauld Gallery, London

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