Folk Art Painting - Little Girl In Lavender By Artist John Bradley

This was found at a local auction and it is painted on heavy wood. We are still investigating how much we should list it for on Ebay. I will add the link when we know. Its very heavy so the shipping will be expensive unfortunately. This was passed up in the auction with no bids and when we went to pick up some items we won we asked about it and he sold it to us for $5. It measures 18" X 23" 

Artist John Bradley Little Girl In Lavender

Here is some research I found.

Artist John Bradley is Portrait painter born in England and eventually moved to New York. There is no documentation on his date of birth or death but 

Vice President George H.W. Bush picked Little Girl In Lavender from a museum  in 1981 for his Vice Presidential home. It was returned in 1989.

The oil painting from 1840 is currently at the National Gallery Of Art. Here is information from their website.

John Bradley active 1831/1847

JOHN B R A D L E Y is an artist whose oeuvre can be well documented through signed works, many of which are dated or inscribed with a street address. Bio-

graphical data is, however, more elusive. Neither his birth nor death date is known, but the inscriptions on the versos of his five Totten family portraits, " Drawn by I. Bradley from Great Britton," indicate his country of origin.1

Bradley's earliest paintings, Young Boy Feeding Rabbits, 1831 (present location unknown),2 Lady at the Piano, 1831 (Hirschl and Adler Galleries, New York), and The Cellist, 1832. (The Phillips Collection, Washing- ton),3 show the sitters at full length and with many more accoutrements than in later paintings. Smaller than his subsequent works,4 they were probably painted while Bradley was in England.

By late 1831 Bradley was on Staten Island (then Richmond Island), where he painted Asher Androvette (Peter H. Tillou, Litchfield, Connecticut), a prominent citizen of that borough, holding a copy of the 2.9 November 1831 issue of The New York and Richmond County Free Press.** With this portrait, Bradley adopted the waist-length format he was to use for adult sitters in America.

In the next few years, Bradley's artistic career can be traced through his renderings of other Richmond resident the Coles, Tottens, and Ellises. In 1833 he painted New York merchant Simon Content and his wife, Angelica Pike Content.6 Efforts to trace Bradley's place of residence at this time through church and census records and local newspapers have not met with success. The 1835 New York State Census, however, lists a William Bradley of the Westfield area of the island where the artist's early sitters reside whose household contained three ''aliens,"7 one of whom may possibly have been John Bradley.

In the 1836 New York city directory, Bradley is listed as a "portrait painter" at 56 Hammersley Street. From 1837 to 1843 he is recorded at 8 Spring Street, and it is at this address that he executed the National Gallery painting as well as his only known miniature.8 Bradley's last address in New York, from 1844 to 1847, was 134 Spring Street. Two portraits, James Patterson Crawford and his wife, Margaretta Bowne Crawford (Monmouth County Historical Society, Freehold, New Jersey) date from this period. After these works, nothing further has been determined of Bradley's life or career.

John Bradley's artistic style is characterized by meticulous attention to detail. From the small necessities of a musician rosin and a cloth for wiping both instrument and brow in The Cellist, to the large astral lighting device10 in Boy with Sinumbra Lamp (private collection), Bradley provided his sitters with personal and current attributes that would enhance their stature. His choice of colors expands from the limited palette of his early portraits of adults to the bold colors of his later portraits of children. Dark backgrounds are enlivened by vividly patterned carpets. Red swagged drapery, often placed to the left of a sitter's face, draws attention to the carefully drawn linear features. Modeling is kept to a minimum, and a light outline is often painted around contours to emphasize forms.






Andrew Davis

This is a copy of a portrait by John Bradley, the original is on view in the West Wing of the National Gallery of Art:

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