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Identification and Creation

Object Number
John Singer Sargent, American (Florence, Italy 1856 - 1925 London, England)
Paul Helleu (1859-1927)
Work Type
c. 1880
Persistent Link

Physical Descriptions

Pastel on brown wove paper
49 x 43.9 cm (19 5/16 x 17 5/16 in.)
frame: 63.2 x 57.8 x 5.7 cm (24 7/8 x 22 3/4 x 2 1/4 in.)
Inscriptions and Marks
  • Signed: black pastel, u.r.: John S. Sargent
  • inscription: u.r., black pastel?, in artist's hand: A l'ami Paul Helleu


Recorded Ownership History
Gift of the artist to Paul Helleu, 1880; Annie Swan Coburn; her gift to Fogg Art Museum, 1933.

Acquisition and Rights

Credit Line
Harvard Art Museums/Fogg Museum, Bequest of Annie Swan Coburn
Accession Year
Object Number
European and American Art

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Publication History

  • Frederick A. Sweet, Sargent, Whistler, and Mary Cassatt, exh. cat., The Art Institute of Chicago (Chicago, IL, 1954), p. 45, no. 42
  • David McKibbin, Sargent's Boston, exh. cat., Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (Boston, MA, 1956), p. 101, Check List of Sargent's Portraits
  • Richard Ormond, John Singer Sargent: Paintings, Drawings, Watercolors, Harper & Row (New York, NY and London, England, 1970), p. 240; plate 33
  • John Singer Sargent, His Own Work, exh. cat., Coe Kerr Gallery, Inc. (New York, NY, 1980), in checklist, unpaginated
  • Carter Ratcliff, John Singer Sargent, Abbeville Press (New York, 1982), p. 118, fig. 166
  • Edward J. Nygren, John Singer Sargent: Drawings from the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service (Washington, D.C, 1983), p. 51, under no. 22, note 2
  • Trevor J. Fairbrother, Sargent Portrait Drawings: 42 Works by John Singer Sargent, Dover Publications Inc. (New York, NY, 1983), pl. 6
  • Patricia Hills, "A Portfolio of Drawings", exh. cat., ed. Patricia Hills, Whitney Museum of American Art (New York, NY, 1986), p. 261, fig. 232
  • Heather McPherson, Fin-de-Siècle Faces: Portraiture in the Age of Proust, Visual Arts Gallery (Birmingham, AL, 1988), fig. 14
  • Trevor J. Fairbrother, John Singer Sargent, Harry N. Abrams, Inc. (New York, NY, 1994), p. 59, repr.
  • Elaine Kilmurray and Richard Ormond, John Singer Sargent, exh. cat., Tate Gallery Publishing Limited (London, England, 1998), under no. 41
  • Richard Ormond and Elaine Kilmurray, John Singer Sargent: The Early Portraits, Yale University Press (New Haven, CT and London, England, 1998), pp. 93 - 95, repr. in color p. 95, cat. no. 91
  • William Rieder, A Charmed Couple: The Art and Life of Walter and Matilda Gay, Harry N. Abrams, Inc. (New York, NY, 2001), p. 165, fig. 97
  • Theodore E. Stebbins, Jr., Virginia Anderson, and Kimberly Orcutt, ed., American Paintings at Harvard, Volume Two, Paintings, Drawings, Pastels and Stained Glass by Artists Born 1826-1856, Harvard Art Museums and Yale University Press (U.S.) (Cambridge, MA and New Haven, CT, 2008), p. 296-97, cat. 313, ill. p. 297.
  • Alison Syme, A Touch of Blossom: John Singer Sargent and the Queer Flora of Fin-de-Siecle Art (University Park, PA, 2010), p. 105, fig. 86
  • Richard Ormond and Elaine Kilmurray, Sargent: Portraits of Artists and Friends, exh. cat., National Portrait Gallery (London, 2015), cat. no. 6, repr.
  • American Art, auct. cat., Christie's, New York (New York, May 19, 2016), under lot 27
  • Annelise K. Madsen, John Singer Sargent and Chicago's Gilded Age, exh. cat., The Art Institute of Chicago (Chicago, 2018), p. 123, figs. 96 (in Annie Swan Coburn's house), 98

Exhibition History

  • Sargent, Whistler, and Mary Cassatt, The Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, 01/14/1954 - 02/25/1954; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 03/25/1954 - 05/23/1954
  • Sargent Centenary Exhibition, Rhode Island School of Design Museum, Providence, 09/05/1956 - 10/03/1956
  • 2002.17[Teaching Exhibition], Tufts University Art Gallery, Medford, 10/01/1971 - 01/01/1972
  • Sargent: Portraits of Artists and Friends, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 06/30/2015 - 10/04/2015

Verification Level

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