This lot is offered without reserve.
Sold Skinner, Inc., Bolton, Massachusetts, October 30, 1994, lot 339A
Paula Cartoun, West Redding, Connecticut
David Wheatcroft, Westborough, Massachusetts
Mrs. Moses B. Russell (Clarissa Peters)
Clarissa Peters was born in North Andover, Massachusetts in 1809. It is probable that she attended the Franklin Academy, the first incorporated institution in Massachusetts for young ladies. She studied with Moses Baker Russell (1809-1884), whom she would later marry in Providence, Rhode Island in 1839. By 1835, she was living and painting in Boston. She frequently exhibited alongside her husband at various exhibitions and she won numerous awards for her work. When she died prematurely from seasickness in 1854, her obituary was on the front page of the Boston Semi-Weekly Atlas (August 16, 1854).
Her delightful miniatures - most often of children - reflect her compositional skill and a talent for capturing detail and color. Characteristics of her work include a hatched striated background, prominent eyes created by heavily outlined eyelids and irises, small mouths with a shadow below the lower lip and carefully delineated eyelashes and eyebrows.
For more information on Mrs. Moses B. Russell, see Randall L. Holton and Charles A. Gilday, "Mrs. Moses B. Russell, Boston Miniaturist," The Magazine Antiques (December, 1999), pp. 816-823.