Probably Rhode Island or Connecticut, ca. 1830's. Watercolor on wove paper. Given the puffy-sleeve dress, which was fashionable in the 1830's, this portrait is among Davis' earlier works, since most known by her were within 1839-1845. Davis typically rendered family and friends in a distinctive style: black dress, full-face angled a bit to the right (not in profile), white highlights applied to the face and neck, and mid-length. The lack of proper linear perspective of her tiny hand and sinuous, stylized arm amplifies the desirable folky nature of this likeness. Portraits by itinerant artists, pre-photography, were prized as they were often the only visual record of the sitter, and also sometimes showed their station and accomplishment (the young lady communicates her ability to read by the showcasing of the little book). Later frame of 7 1/2 x 6 5/8 inches; site size 5 1/2 x 4 5/8. Reference: See "Three New England Watercolor Painters" pp 42-55 for other portraits by Davis..
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