Portrait of Mrs. Nancy Wyman-Houghton
Benjamin Greenleaf (1769-1821)
American, Lived/Active: Massachusetts, New Hampshire
Unsigned, ca. 1810-1815.
Reverse painting on glass
19 1/2″ x 14 1/2″ framed
Condition: Some lifting of paint on glass, some paint loss although no visible restoration (examined out of frame). Retains original backboard, in a period gilt frame.
Provenance: Descended through a prominent Massachusetts family related to the sitter.
Label on backboard: (Mrs.) Nancy W. (Carter) Wyman Houghton. Born in Stowe, Mass. 1791. Died in Winchester, Mass,1878. This painting is for Mrs. Florence G. Wiley, Gardner, Mass.
Benjamin Greenleaf was best known for his profile format of portraiture, most of which are reverse paintings on glass. His known works range in date from 1803-1818. According to the research done by the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., Greenleaf painted the members of many families that were related through intermarriage and seems to have relied on word-of-mouth, rather than newspaper or other advertising to obtain commissions. This is perhaps why there are so few examples known and seldomly do they appear in the marketplace.
Item ID: WoA-AMP-RVRS 010