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Creator:
Stanley Spencer, 1891–1959, British
Title:

Mrs. Osmund Frank, J. P.

Former Title(s):

Portrait of Mrs. Frank, JP

Mrs. Osmund Frank, J.P. (Dr. Winifred Augusta Doherty). [1951, Royal Academy of Arts, London, exhibition catalogue]

Date:
1951
Medium:
Oil on canvas
Dimensions:
35 1/2 x 27 1/2 inches (90.2 x 69.9 cm)
Credit Line:
Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Fund
Copyright Status:
© Estate of the Artist
Accession Number:
B1998.22
Classification:
Paintings
Collection:
Paintings and Sculpture
Subject Terms:
bracelets | brooch | brown | chair | collar | earrings | female | furniture | gold | hands | interior | jacket | jewelry | judge | nail polish | necklace | pattern | pin | portrait | puzzle | ring | seated | silver | stained glass | window | woman
Access:
Not on view
Link:
https://collections.britishart.yale.edu/catalog/tms:10382
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Stanley Spencer maintained the figurative tradition in British art before and after the Second World War at a time when abstraction was considered more sophisticated and avant-garde. He was also a talented, if not always flattering, portraitist and took inspiration from the northern old master tradition, especially the work of Jan van Eyck and Hans Holbein. This portrait was commissioned by Dr. Osmund Frank, along with a pendant of himself. Frank was a physician and Mayor of Maidenhead, and Mrs. Frank assumes the role of a provincial dignitary’s wife: she was, however, a talented figure in her own right, practicing psychiatry under her maiden name, Dr. Winifred Doherty. Shortly after sitting for Spencer, whom they counted as a personal friend, the Franks moved to Jamaica, where they continued to practice medicine.

Gallery label for installation of YCBA collection, 2016



Though a prominent psychiatrist who practiced under her maiden name as Dr. Winnifred Augusta Doherty, Mrs. Frank poses in her role as town dignitary, immaculately dressed and haughty in demeanor. The portrait was commissioned privately from Spencer as a companion piece to his official portrait of Mrs. Frank's husband, the Mayor of Maidenhead, which was funded by public subscription and shows him in his mayoral robes. Spencer's fascination with the details of Mrs. Frank's dress and surroundings, and the unremitting honesty in his portrayal of her features, reflect his admiration for the artists of the Northern Renaissance. The Franks had become quite friendly with Spencer, and between 1950 and 1955 he also painted their son Andrew and their dog, Jummie II.

Gallery label for installation of YCBA collection, 2008

Figuring Women - The Female in Modern British Art (Yale Center for British Art, 2008-03-28 - 2008-06-08) [YCBA Objects in the Exhibition]

Revisiting Traditions [BAC 20th century painting & sculpture] (Yale Center for British Art, 2002-04-30 - 2005-05-18) [YCBA Objects in the Exhibition]

20th Century Paintings and Sculpture (Yale Center for British Art, 2000-01-27 - 2000-04-30) [YCBA Objects in the Exhibition]

Annual Exhibition of 20th Century British Paintings, Watercolours and Drawings, Spink & Sons, London, 1991, no. 55, N6768 S685 1991 (YCBA) [YCBA]

Keith Bell, Stanley Spencer : A Complete Catalogue of the Paintings, Phaidon, London, 1992, pp. 348, 350, 494-495, no. 368, NJ18 Sp35 A12 B45 1992 (YCBA) [YCBA]

Christie's Sale Catalogue : British and Irish Modernist and Contemporary Paintings, Watercolours and Sculpture : 8 June 1990, Christie's, London, June 8, 1990, p. 94, Lot 288, Auction Catalogues (YCBA)

Paul Mellon's Legacy, a passion for British art. [large print labels] , Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, CT, 2007, v. 1, N5220 M552 +P381 2007, Mellon Shelf (YCBA) [YCBA]

The Portraiture of Hands, The Times (London), London, 1960, p. 16, available online via The Times Digital Archive [ORBIS]

Angus Trumble, The Finger : A Handbook, , Farrar, Straus and Giroux, New York, 2010, p. 173, GT498.F46 T78 2010 (YCBA) [YCBA]

Twentieth-Century British Art : From Sickert to Hirst, 1-24th April 1998, Spink-Leger Pictures ... London. , Spink-Leger, Ltd., London, 1998, no. 20, DealerCat Spink Leger Pictures (YCBA) [YCBA]

R. H. Wilenski, Contemporary English Painting : A Personal Survey, The Sphere, vol. 214, London, February 27, 1954, p. 299, fig. 1, available online via ProQuest [ORBIS]


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