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Joseph Whiting Stock (1815-1855)


Pair of Portraits, Mr. Philo Franklin Wilcox and Mrs. Orpha J. Wilcox.
Connecticut Valley, Springfield Area, ca. 1838.
Oil on canvas, in original giltwood frames.
Over-all in fine condition, canvas mounted on board.
Dimensions: 30 ¼” x 25”, 37 ½” x 32” with frames.
Provenance: By descent to a member of the Plumb family, Springfield, Ma.; Nathan Liverant and Sons, Colchester, CT. 1968; James and Catherine Perkins, East Hampton, NY.; Sotheby’s, NY, January 1986, lot 453.
Literature: Juliette Tomlinson, “The Painting and the Journal of Joseph Whiting Stock,” (Middletown, CT., 1976), p.73. nos. 24 and 25. Frances Phipps, “Portrait of a Mystery,” New York Times, 25March 1979, p. 86. The Frick Art Reference Library (described as Mr. and Mrs. Plumb).
This pair of portraits illustrates one of Joseph Whiting Stock’s most important patrons, Philo Franklin Wilcox (1805-1871) and his wife Orpha J. Wood (1808-1890). As recorded in the artist’s account book, the couple were painted, along with their nine-year old son, George, in 1838. In 1845, Stock painted two more of his children posthumously, once in a double portrait and again in paired individual portraits. These works, showing the young Mary and Francis Wilcox with their favorite toys are among the most significant survivals of the artist’s work and are now in the collections of the National Gallery of Art (double portrait) and The American Folk Art Museum (pair of individual portraits).

Item ID: WoA-AMP-OC 623

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