American portraitists

Lady Helen Vincent, Viscountess d’Abernon
John Singer Sargent (American; 1856–1925)
Oil on canvas
Birmingham Museum of Art, Birmingham, Alabama


Margaret Bowland (b.1953)

“Beauty makes sense to me, has weight for me, only when it falls from grace. It starts to matter when it carries damage. Sorrow allows it to cast a shadow. It becomes three-dimensional. It enters our world.”

Margaret Bowland’s spellbinding and psychologically charged work brings viewers face to face with contentious culture while affirming the resilience and triumph of the human spirit. A masterful observer of life’s unpredictable nature, her work conveys universal themes through unusually specific insights. Bowland’s work explores the subtle and nuanced edges between strength and vulnerability, certainty and doubt, faith and disbelief. Bowland’s probing and deeply personal images call into question our societal expectations of gender, race, and beauty.

© All images courtesy of the artist ; artist portrait by Andrew Theodorakis/New York Daily

[more Margaret Bowland | artist recommended by by blackonwhiteorwhiteonblack]

Portrait of Gabriel Fauré
John Singer Sargent (American; 1856–1925)
ca. 1889
Oil on canvas
Musée de la musique, Paris

Inscribed along the top of the canvas by the artist: “à Gabriel Fauré souvenir affectueux John S. Sargent.”

Mrs. George Swinton (Elizabeth Ebsworth)
John Singer Sargent (American; 1856–1925)
Oil on canvas
Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois

Gabriel Fauré
John Singer Sargent (American; 1856–1925)
Graphite on off-white paper
Harvard Art Museums, Fogg Museum, Cambridge, Massachusetts

John Singer Sargent (American; 1856–1925)
Woman with Collie
after 1890
Watercolor, gouache, and graphite on white wove paper
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

John Singer Sargent (American; 1856–1925)
Portrait of Millicent, Duchess of Sutherland
Oil on canvas
© 2009 Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza, Madrid, Spain

Portrait of Mrs. John White Alexander (On a Balcony)
John White Alexander (American; 1856–1915)
Oil on canvas
Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), Los Angeles, California

Claude Monet Painting by the Edge of a Wood
John Singer Sargent (American; 1856–1925)
Oil on canvas
Tate, London

James McNeill Whistler (American; 1834–1903)
Portrait of George A. Lucas
Oil on panel, 1886
The Walters Art Museum, Baltimore, Maryland