Eastman Johnson Catalogue Raisonné
Patricia Hills, PhD, Founder and Director | Abigael MacGibeny, MA, Project Manager
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Photo: © President and Fellows of Harvard College
43.3 U.S. Early Portrait Drawings, Women

Johnson's earliest recorded portrait drawings of women are dated 1845: his portrait of Dolley Madison that indicates the setting and one of his older sister Judith which shows head and neck only. Unlike the portraits of men, his portraits of women are softer in light-dark chiaroscuro and do not exhibit the muscular structure of the face as do those of men. Johnson consolidated his draughtsman’s talents during his sojourn in Boston, where he painted Henry Wadsworth Longfellow and his circle. He took about three days to complete a charcoal portrait. The style of the time was to present portraits in oval frames. 

See Technical Information on Johnson's Practices for a discussion of charcoal, black chalk, crayon, and pastel. —PH

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Hills no. 43.3.12
1907 Sale no. 110
Dorothy Dandridge Payne Todd Madison
1907 Sale title: The Famous Dolly [sic] Madison
Harvard Art Museums title: Dolley Madison (1768–1849)
Alternate titles: Crayon Sketch of Dolly [sic] Madison; Dolley Madison; Dolly [sic] Madison; Mrs. James (Dolly) [sic] Madison; Portrait of Dolly [sic] Madison
1846, March
Black and white chalk on buff wove paper
21 1/4 x 14 3/4 in. (54 x 37.5 cm)
Signed and dated lower left, in black chalk: E. Johnson / Mch. 1846
Record last updated June 9, 2022. Please note that the information on this and all pages is periodically reviewed and subject to change.
Citation: Hills, Patricia, and Abigael MacGibeny. "Dorothy Dandridge Payne Todd Madison, 1846, March (Hills no. 43.3.12)." Eastman Johnson Catalogue Raisonné. www.eastmanjohnson.org/catalogue/entry.php?SystemID=925 (accessed on July 13, 2024).