Asher B. Durand (after Thomas Sully) John Quincy Adams, President of the United States. Philadelphia: W.H. Morgan, 1826
Asher B. Durand (after Thomas Sully)
John Quincy Adams, President of the United States. Philadelphia: W.H. Morgan, 1826
Copper engraving (image size: 513 x 351 mm; sheet size: 686 x 495 mm).
A striking example of this famous portrait of John Quincy Adams by one of the greatest American engravers
Durand's portrait of John Quincy Adams is the quintessential example of his superior technique. Its clean lines and meticulous attention to detail create a magnetic image which immediately captivates the viewer's attention. Surrounded by maps and books Adams is portrayed as the enlightened president. His portrait, in composition and execution, is a wonderful example of presidential portraiture, and it is no wonder that the public clamored to purchase this magnificent image.
"This engraving...was executed at the request of Thomas Sully for the Philadelphia print seller W. H. Morgan, who paid $700 for the plate" (Hudson River Museum). Although the Grolier catalogue and others have attributed the print to be after a portrait by Gilbert Stuart which was finished by Sully (i.e. the Harvard University portrait), the source for the engraving has been more correctly ascribed to a small work painted by Sully alone. The map on the table to Adams' left has been attributed by some to be a copy of the western portion of John Melish's famed map of the United States, which showed the boundaries as negotiated by the Adams-Onis Treaty of 1819.
Cunningham, Popular Images of the Presidency: From Washington to Lincoln 44-146; The Grolier Club, Catalogue of the Engraved Work of Asher B. Durand (New York: 1895) 4; Hudson River Museum, Asher B. Durand: An Engraver's and a Farmer's Art (Yonkers: 1983) 29; Stauffer 551 (1st state)
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