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John Hoppner, 1758–1810
Louisa Lane, Called 'Cecilia'
Former Title(s):
Portrait of a young lady [1782, Royal Academy of Arts, London, exhibition catalogue]
exhibited 1782
Materials & Techniques:
Oil on canvas
30 3/16 x 24 3/4 inches (76.7 x 62.9 cm)
Credit Line:
Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection
Copyright Status:
Public Domain
Accession Number:
Paintings and Sculpture
Subject Terms:
clouds | costume | curled | girl | gloves | hat | melancholy | portrait | straw | trim | white | woman
Associated People:
Lane, Louisa
Not on view
IIIF Manifest:

This portrait is one of three paintings that in 1782 won Hoppner the gold medal of the Royal Academy of Arts. Traditionally identified as Louisa Lane, by the end of the year Hoppner had arranged for the portrait to be engraved in stipple and sold as a representation of the fictional character "Cecilia," after Fanny Burney's five-volume bestseller of the same year, Cecilia, or, Memoirs of an Heiress. Sitters, especially young women and their families, could rely on a measure of privacy because their identity was usually suppressed when portraits were publicly exhibited. However, to be co-opted in a commercial venture of this kind could cause friction between artists and their portrait clients. Though Hoppner was at times thoughtless and abrasive, he succeeded in building a powerful clientele, and the Duke of Clarence (the future King William IV), Lord Harewood, Lord Grosvenor, and Lady Hampden all stood as godparents to his children.

Gallery label for installation of YCBA collection, 2005

British Art at Yale, Apollo, v.105, April 1977, pp. 248, 251, fig. 26, N1 .A54 + OVERSIZE (YCBA) [YCBA]

Malcolm Cormack, Concise Catalogue of Paintings in the Yale Center for British Art, Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, CT, 1985, pp. 124-125, N590.2 A83 (YCBA) [YCBA]

Catherine M. Gordon, British paintings Hogarth to Turner, Frederick Warne, London, 1981, p. 34, ND466 G67 (YCBA) [YCBA]

William McKay, John Hoppner ..., P. & D. Colnaghi & Co., London, 1909, p. 149, NJ18 H7954 M3 + (YCBA) [YCBA]

Paul Mellon's Legacy : a passion for British art [large print labels], , Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, CT, 2007, v. 3, N5220 M552 P381 2007 OVERSIZE (YCBA) [YCBA]

Ellis Waterhouse, An Impressive Panorama of British Portraiture, Apollo, v. 105, no. 182, April 1977, p. 248, 251, fig. 26, N1 A54 + (YCBA) Another copy of this article may be found in a separately bound and catalogued copy of this issue located on the Mellon Shelf [call number : N5220 M552 A7 1977 + (YCBA)] [YCBA]

Ellis Waterhouse, Three British Portraits, Bulletin of the Detroit Institute of Arts, Vol. 57, No. 1, 1979, pp. 41- 45, J418 H8673 M56 1976A (SML) [ORBIS]

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