Portrait of George Burnham

Cecilia Beaux, American, 1855 - 1942

Geography:
Made in United States, North and Central America

Date:
1887

Medium:
Oil on canvas

Dimensions:
47 3/4 x 41 3/8 inches (121.3 x 105.1 cm) Framed: 53 x 46 1/2 inches (134.6 x 118.1 cm)

Curatorial Department:
American Art

Object Location:

* Gallery 116, American Art, first floor

Accession Number:
1986-17-1

Credit Line:
Gift of Mrs. George Burnham III, 1986

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Label:

The two sides of George Burnham (1817-1912) are expressed in this simultaneously dignified and informal portrait. An engineer who became the chief financial officer of Philadelphia's world-famous Baldwin Locomotive Works, Burnham was also a dedicated member of the First Swedenborgian Church.

Cecilia Beaux, the favored portrait painter of Philadelphia's elite, depicts Burnham in a somber business suit, but sitting in a stylishly rustic chair on the porch of his summer house at Lake George, New York. Against a backdrop of pines that hints at his spiritual connection to nature, he holds a book that may be one of the many church publications he sponsored.


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