J. R. Smith after Sir Joshua Reynolds
Lady Catherine Pelham Clinton
14 x 19.5 inches
A charming, full-length mezzotint portrait by J. R. Smith after the painting by Sir Joshua Reynolds, published in London in 1782.
Lady Catherine was born on 6th April 1776, the only daughter of Henry Pelham Clinton, styled Earl of Lincoln and grand-daughter of Henry, Duke of Newcastle. She married the son of the Earl of Radnor in 1800 but died in her confinement of a second daughter in 1804. This print depicts Lady Catherine feeding her brood of chickens and was one of the mezzotints that fetched the extraordinary price of $3990 when a first state came up for sale at Christie’s New York in 1914!
John Raphael Smith was born in Derby in 1752, the youngest son of the landscape painter, Thomas Smith, who was known as ‘Smith of Derby’. He travelled to London at the time of his father’s death in 1767 and after a period of shop work began his career as an artist. He began work as a painter of both miniatures and larger scale paintings but went on to develop his skill as an engraver. In 1781 he moved to a studio in Oxford Street and by 1784 he had been appointed as mezzotint engraver to the Prince of Wales. By 1787 he had settled permanently in Covent Garden, until his death in Doncaster in 1812. Smith’s engravings count amongst the most admired examples of mezzotint