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John Singer Sargent (1856-1925)
John Singer Sargent (1856-1925)

Man and Woman on a Bed

John Singer Sargent (1856-1925)
Man and Woman on a Bed
signed 'John S. Sargent' (lower right)
oil on board
11¼ x 8¾ in. (28.6 x 22.2 cm.)
Painted circa 1880-82.
Violet Sargent (Mrs. Francis Ormond), sister of the artist, 1925.
Alex Reid and Lefevre Ltd, London.
Acquired by the present owner, circa 1960s.
Sargent Trust List of Pictures and Drawings, London, 1927, no. 1 (as Spanish figures of Man and a Woman sitting on a bed).
R. Ormond and Elaine Kilmurray, John Singer Sargent: Figures and Landscapes, 1874-1882, New Haven, Connecticut, 2006, p. 278, no. 775, illustrated.

Lot Essay

The present work depicts the advancements of a gentleman on an unsuspecting woman is more than an improvised sketch by Sargent. Three related studies were executed at this time, two of which are in the Fogg Art Museum, Harvard University Art Museums, Cambridge, Massachusetts. According to Richard Ormond and Elaine Kilmurray, Sargent's use of the woman's rolling eyes, the flower clenched in the teeth and her resisting arm associates the work to the painting El Jaleo in the collection of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston, Massachusetts.

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