Rembrandt Peale

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Rembrandt Peale, Self Portrait, 1828.

Rembrandt Peale (Bucks County, Pennsylvania, 1778 - Philadelphia, 1860) was an American Neoclassical painter and writer. The son of painter Charles Willson Peale, he is considered one of the most distinguished painters of the 19th American century. The Peales were the first American family of artists. [1] Peale studied painting in London under Benjamin West, in the art galleries of Paris and in Italy; he exhibited at the Royal Academy of London.

At the age of seventeen he painted the last portrait of George Washington to be done from life. [2]

In 1824, Peale painted a portrait of Washington through an stone oval window; this window is decorated with a garland of oak leaves, and it is surmounted by the Phydian head of Jupiter and engraved with the legend Patriæ Pater. It was purchased by Congress in 1832 and still hangs in the US Capitol. The portrait became known as his "Porthole" picture. Peale also painted the portraits of Thomas Jefferson (1805), John C. Calhoun, William Henry Harrison and Chief Justice John Marshall. He completed over 600 paintings.

Some of his noted figure compositions are "Napoleon on Horseback" (1810); "Babes in the Wood"; "Song of the Shirt"; " Jupiter and Io" (1813); "Lvsippa on the Rock" : "Roman Daughter" (1811); "Ascent of Elijah"; and "Court of Death" (1820). [3]


The portrait of George Washington by Gilbert Stuart known as the Antheneum portrait had uncompleted portions, those were filled in by Rembrandt Peale.

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