Frank Weston Benson (1862-1951)
Frank Weston Benson (1862-1951)

Mary Sullivan

Frank Weston Benson (1862-1951)
Mary Sullivan
signed and inscribed 'To Mary Codman - F.W. Benson - 1931.' (upper left)
oil on canvas
18 x 14 in. (45.7 x 356 cm.)
Painted circa 1902-04.
The artist.
Mary Sullivan Codman, the sitter, gift from the above, 1931.
Private collection, New Jersey, circa 1965.
Ira Spanierman, Inc., New York.
Acquired by the late owner from the above, 1968.
Boston, Massachusetts, Vose Galleries, The Boston School Tradition: Truth, Beauty and Timeless Craft, June 6-August 1, 2015.

Lot Essay

Faith Andrews Bedford writes of the sitter of the present work, "Mary Sullivan was a great favorite in many of the studios of Boston. She became more than just a model to both the Benson and Tarbell families, acting as an occasional nanny to the Tarbell children and helping the Bensons when they entertained. Her carriage and bearing suited Benson's needs, for she was tall and slim with finely chiseled features. She was known in Benson's family simply as Mary, or 'the beautiful red-haired model.'" (Frank W. Benson: American Impressionist, New York, 1994, p. 90)

While he painted the present work circa 1902-04, Frank Weston Benson inscribed the work ''To Mary Codman - F.W. Benson - 1931.' when giving it to the sitter, Mary Codman, in 1931.

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