One of a pair of shadowboxes. The other box was titled in the Christie's inventory: A shadowbox framed depiction of two actors in performance. Provenance from a label affixed to the top of one of a pair of boxes, in Mrs. Lewis hand. Formerly owned by the Vestris (Mrs. Charles Mathews, Lucia Elizabeth Mathews 1797-1856, daughter of the engraver Gaetano Bartolozzi) and were given by the Lewises to Winchell Smith (the playwright) in 1832 and on his death came back to the Lewises.
The profile of an actor in the role of a Spanish nobleman bears a strong resemblance to that of David Garrick, in costume on stage looking left, arm raised in a dramatic gesture. Garrick's rule over the English stage was absolute for over thirty years. He went to London with Dr. Johnson in 1737, and by 1741 had progressed to his famous portrayal of Richard III, which made his reputation. Garrick was accomplished in seventeen Shakespearian roles and was also a gifted playwright and producer.
Shadow box framed depiction David Garrick on stage
Garrick, David,--1717-1779. Vestris, Lucia Elizabeth Bartolozzi,--1797-1856--Ownership.
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Lewis Walpole Library LEWIS WALPOLE LIBRARY, Prints and Drawings