Antique miniature portraits of the Tormey-Holder Collection



American Artist: John Carlin



Portrait miniature by John Carlin of a Jacksonian Era boy wearing a blue velvet Eton suit with silver buttons and a lace collar

Jacksonian Era Boy Wearing a Blue Velvet
Eton Suit with Silver Buttons and a Lace Collar

circa 1845
by John Carlin (1813-1891)

2 x 2 3/8 inches (sight)

watercolor on ivory; housed in a gilt metal pendant frame


About the Artist: Born deaf and mute in early nineteenth century Philadelphia, John Carlin's story offers a shining example of how one can overcome obstacles and adversities. He studied portrait painting under John Neagle (1796-1865) and took lessons in drawing from John Reubens Smith (1775-1849) before traveling abroad to France in 1838. There, he studied under Paul Delaroche (1797-1856) and took a strong interest in painting miniature portraits. He returned to the United States in 1841, settling in New York City, where he began painting miniature portraits professionally. From New York, he also made frequent working trips to Baltimore, Washington, D.C., and various towns throughout Pennsylvania, Massachusetts and New York State. Exhibited at the National Academy of Design (New York City), the American Art Union, the Maryland Historical Society and the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. In addition to miniature portraits, he also produced a number of genre and landscape scenes. A tireless champion of those who shared his disabilities, he helped establish the National Deaf-Mute College (known now as Galludet University) in Washington, D.C. Known to have works in collections of the Cincinnati Art Museum, the Maryland Historical Society, the Museum of Fine Arts (Boston), The Metropolitan Museum (New York City), the New-York Historical Society and the Smithsonian American Art Museum. Listed by Barratt & Zabar (pages 209-213), Benezit, Blättel (pages 202, 203), Bolton (pages 22, 23), Fielding (page 141), Foskett (page 505), Johnson (pages 90, 91) and Schidlof (page 127).


Other portraits in the Tormey-Holder Collection by John Carlin
(click photos for larger views and additional information):


Portrait miniature by John Carlin of a Jacksonian Era gentleman

Jacksonian Era Gentleman



Portrait miniature by John Carlin of a young, Jacksonian Era child with blond hair

Young, Jacksonian Era Child with Blond Hair









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