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Image of Portrait of Charles Harris

Francis Alexander
American, 1800–1880

Portrait of Charles Harris

about 1845

Object Type: Painting
Creation Place: North America, American
Dimensions:
30 1/2 in. x 24 3/4 in. (77.47 cm x 62.87 cm)
Medium and Support: Oil on canvas
Accession Number: 1936.0101

Credit Line: Gift of Mrs. Price Sterling


Francis Alexander was born in Killingly, Connecticut on February 3, 1800. After studying briefly with Alexander Robertson in New York City, he began his career as a still-life, genre, and portrait painter in Killingly and Providence, Rhode Island. In 1827 he moved to Boston where he soon became one of that city’s leading portraitists, achieving honorary member status in the National Academy of Design in 1840. The artist and his family moved to Italy in 1853, and lived in Florence for the rest of his life.

The work is neither signed nor dated. The attribution of this painting to Francis Alexander and the identity of the subject are based on the museum’s accession records from 1936. If these are correct, the portrait was probably painted in Boston between 1827 and 1853.

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