Manchester Art Gallery

Study of a Head

Object description

Three-quarter left side head and shoulders portrait of a young woman with long auburn wavy hair, in blue velvet dress with a white lace collar and pendant necklace. Her body is turned toward the viewer, but her head is turned to the left. There is a mottled, blue background.

Display label

Study of a Head 1863 John Thomson 1835 – 1878 Oil on canvas John Thomson lived in Victoria Park, Manchester. We think he exhibited this painting at the Royal Manchester Institution in 1863. The young girl has wavy auburn hair and pale skin: her beauty has a Pre-Raphaelite quality. Thomson must have been influenced by the paintings of Dante Gabriel Rossetti (1828 – 1882) and John Everett Millais (1829 – 1896). Thomas Armstrong gift 1906.101