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Portrait of Eleazer Bullard (1787-1858)

ca. 1835
Origin: America, Massachusetts, Lee (probably)
Unframed: 34 1/16 x 27 7/8in. (86.5 x 70.8cm) and Framed: 36 3/4 x 30 13/16 x 2in.
Oil on canvas
Museum Purchase
Acc. No. 1973.100.1
A half-to-three-quarter-length portrait of a man seated sideways in a side chair, his body turned slightly towards the viewer's left, his legs crossed, his proper right arm resting on the crest of the chair and his proper left arm resting on a small, grain-painted desk, table, or box on which, also, appear a sheet of paper and a black inkwell. He holds a white quill pen in his proper right hand. He wears a black coat and trousers, a cream-colored waistcoat, a white shirt with a stand-up collar, and a black neck cloth. He has dark brown hair, sideburns, and dark gray eyes. The background is vaguely defined with cloud-like forms of gray, graduating darkest to lightest from outside to center.

The 2-inch turned split baluster frame, painted red with black sponging, is original.
Label:Eleazer Bullard (1787-1858) commissioned Erastus Salisbury Field to paint these companion portraits of himself and his second wife about 1835. At the same time, Bullard had Field paint portraits of his daughter from his first marriage and son-in-law, Mr. and Mrs. Squire Brewer. All four paintings are the same size and carry identical frames so that they may hang as a group. The couples even share the same poses.

Field began painting in 1825 and by the 1830s had developed an efficient style that allowed him to complete a half-length portrait in a day, for which he charged $4.00. His basic format could be modified to suit his clients. In this instance, Eleazer is portrayed leaning on a table with an inkwell and quill while Emily rests her arm on a table with a pincushion.
Provenance:From the subject to his daughter, Emeline Bullard Brewer (Mrs. Squire Brewer)(1798-1849); to her daughter, Marretta Brewer Street (Mrs. Oscar Dickinson Street)(1839-?); to her son, Oscar Dickinson Street II (1877-?); to his son, Oscar Dickinson Street III (1913-1971); to his wife, Grace Ann Gregory Street (Mrs. Oscar Dickinson Street III)(b. 1944), who married, second, James Stagliano and was CWF's source.