Antique Portrait Miniature of Woman Cleaning Her Eyeglasses. Signed C.W.Wing, dated 1837
  • Naïve portrait miniature of lady cleaning her spectacles.  I was surprised to find the backing paper of this watercolor on natural wafer portrait signed by C.W. Wing and dated 1837.  The signature notes that Wing's address in 1837 was 29 Queen Street, Bryanston Square.  I have owned one other work by Wing but it was painted on card.  I have supplied an image of the first one below so that you can see the similarities in his or her work.  Little is known about Wing.  In Miniatures Dictionary and Guide, Daphne Foskett tells us that Wing was active between 1826-1838.  She notes that Wing engraved "Views of Brighton" in 1826.

    The solid painted background seems to be favored by Wing.  The bold mustard color of the background in this portrait makes the lady stand out, almost popping off of the ivory.  Her vibrant blue plaid scarf and bonnet ribbons draw your eye into the portrait.  Her features are delicate and her eyes well-defined.  Her billowing demi-gigot sleeves, full and padded to the elbow, then tight to the wrist, draw the viewers eyes to the very unusual prop of eyeglasses and a handkerchief for cleaning those spectacles.

    A previous owner taped the edge of the background and painted the tape to match the mustard background.  There is the very slightest overlap of the more recent paint onto the background....but only ever so slightly.  The match in color is near perfect.  (There is a small chance that the tape is original and painted by Wing, but I doubt it.)  The 5 1/2" x 4 1/2" frame may be original and has a stunning, darkened patina with some craquelere to the original surface.  The small original brass hanging hook remains.  The image size is 3 3/8" x 2 5/8".  The verso also has glass so you can see the signature.

    (#3758)     Sold