antique silhouettes

Father and son face to face on dark oval grounds

Samuel Andrews: cameo profiles of the British Raj

SAMUEL ANDREWS’ rather ghostly white en-grisaille cameos occupy that strange overlap between silhouette and portrait miniature.Some love them while others find them rather creepy. Technically, a soon as an artist paints the face, they are no longer working in silhouette. However, he was one of the artists I looked at while developing my own range of en-grisaille portraits.

Portrait and caricature silhouettes bu Inger Eidem

Portraits and Caricatures by Inger Eidem

I HEARD ABOUT Inger Eidem long before I knew her name. Whilst cutting silhouettes at events I’d occasionally meet people who’d tell me about silhouettes they had done in their childhood. Apparently the artist cut through two pieces of paper at the same time, one of which became a portrait and the other a caricature.

Wait, what?! Is that even possible? I thought they must be hallucinating.

Marie Antoinette, by Isabella Beetham

LAST WEDNESDAYI picked up an eighteenth-century silhouette by Isabella Beetham. Beetham is a well-known Georgian artist and her work is much prized by collectors today. She is something of a feminist icon.

She is one of very few eighteenth-century female artists to build a successful career in the male-dominated art world of her time. I came across this silhouettes at an auction, part of the estate of a well-known collector and art historian. I was lucky enough to place a winning bid.

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