Julia Haring White, 1897
Oil on canvas, 30 ¼ x 25 ¼
70.17.2; Gift of H. Wade White
In 1897, George and Julia White commissioned Connecticut artist Jeanette Loop to paint a portrait pair. Loop, trained both in New York and Paris, was celebrated for the freedom and originality of her likenesses. An associate of the National Academy, Loop and her artist husband, Henry, had their home and studio in New York City where Julia was raised and where her family remained. The artist and the sitter could each claim an honorable lineage of New England and New York settlers, governors and ministers, and they may have met through shared social associations.
Mrs. White wears an evening gown in this portrait. Its low neckline extending around the upper parts of her arms provides a span across the shoulders that accentuates her corseted waist. The creamy white silk is shot through with pink flowers and decorated with pearly beads at the front. A bright light from the right accents the pinkness of her skin and provides a strong contrast for the brown background.