Portrait of Louise Abbema

Self Portrait of Sarah Bernhardt

French
1875
Sarah Bernhardt (French, 1844–1923)


Object Place: Europe, France

Dimensions

Overall: 21.5 x 18.1 x 3.8 cm (8 7/16 x 7 1/8 x 1 1/2 in.)

Accession Number

1989.196

Medium or Technique

Metal; bronze

Out on Loan

On display at Nagoya/Boston Museum of Fine Arts, Japan, June 10, 2017 – October 15, 2017

Collections

Europe

Classifications

Sculpture

Oval bronze plaque with profile portrait in relief of Louise Abbema wearing a plumed hat and bow at her neck.

Inscription

Inscribed (in the wax) on front: "A Mon Amie Louise Abbema, Sarah Bernhardt 1875". Inscribed (in the bronze) on back: "S. Martin, Fondeur"

Provenance

1875, given by the artist to Louise Abbema (b. 1858 - d. 1927) [see note 1]. June 16, 1978, possibly anonymous sale, Hôtel Drouot, Paris, lot 15 [see note 2]. 1989, Sandorval and Co., Inc., New York; 1989, sold by Sandorval to the MFA. (Accession Date: June 21, 1989)

NOTES:
[1] Abbema was also an artist and a close friend of Sarah Bernhardt. The portrait is inscribed: "A Mon Amie Louise Abbema, Sarah Bernhardt 1875." [2] It has not yet been established whether the object in this sale is the MFA object, or a variant of nearly identical dimensions.

Credit Line

Otis Norcross Fund and Gift of Robert A. Radloff and Ann Beha