Madame Ramón Subercaseaux1880 by John Singer Sargent
This portrait is a collaboration between a young artist establishing himself in the Parisian art world and a young couple with progressive tastes. It depicts Amalia Subercaseaux (1860–1930), wife of Chilean consul and artist Ramón Subercaseaux seated at a piano in the couple’s elegant and stylish residence on the Avenue du Bois de Boulogne. Working within an established portrait tradition, Sargent assimilates evolving ideas about representation and identity. The portrait occupies an important place in the narrative of Sargent’s early career. Exhibited at the Paris Salon in 1881, along with his portrait of the Pailleron children, it earned him a second-class medal, which meant that he was allowed to exhibit at future Salons without submitting to the jury.
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