Sarah Miriam Peale
|Sarah Miriam Peale|
Self Portrait by Sarah Miriam Peale, 1818
May 19, 1800|
|Died||February 19, 1885
|Known for||still life; portraiture|
Sarah Miriam Peale (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, May 19, 1800 – February 4, 1885, Philadelphia) was an American portrait painter, one of the notable family of artists descended from the miniaturist and still-life painter James Peale, who was her father and Mary Claypoole, who was her mother. Miriam Peale is noted as a portrait painter, mainly of politicians and military figures. Lafayette sat for her four times.
Sarah was James Peale's youngest daughter and was trained by her father, and uncle Charles Willson Peale. She served as a studio assistant to her father. Her first public works date from 1816 with subjects such as flowers and still-life but soon turned to portraiture, In 1818, she spent three months with Rembrandt Peale, her cousin, in Baltimore, and again in 1820 and 1822. He influenced her painting style and subject matter. For 25 years, she painted in Baltimore (1822–47) and, intermittently, in Washington, D.C. She attended sessions of Congress, and painted portraits of many public figures.
She was accepted to the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in 1824  along with her sister Anna Claypoole Peale, the first women to achieve this distinction. Over 100 commissioned portrait paintings are known from her time in Baltimore and she was the most prolific artist in the city during that era. Her subjects were wealthy Baltimore residents and politicians from Washington DC.
In 1847, ill health caused her to relocate to St. Louis where she became independently successful and one of America's first professional female artists able to earn her living through her work. Most of her work from this era is in private hands and not available for viewing. Around 1860 she shifted her subjects from portraits back to still-life, but with a natural arrangement rather that the formal ones of her earlier years.
She returned to her hometown in 1878, living out her last years there with her sisters Anna Claypoole (died 1879) and Margaretta Angelica (died 1879). Like her sisters she never married. She died in 1885, aged 85. She is buried at the Gloria Dei (Old Swedes') Church Burial Ground in Philadelphia.
An incomplete list of exhibited works:
- Self-Portrait, 1818, oil on canvas, 61.2 x 48.3 cm, National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC
- Anna Marie Smyth, 1821, oil on canvas, 91.4 x 71.1 cm, Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Philadelphia
- Susan Avery, 1821, oil on canvas, 89.5 x 69.85 cm, National Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington, DC
- Isaac Avery, 1821, oil on canvas, 89.5 x 69.85 cm, National Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington, DC
- Fruits and Wine, 1822, oil on canvas, 29.8 x 40.6 cm
- Mrs. Rubens Peale and Son, 1823, oil on canvas, 76.2 x 60.9 cm, The Peale Museum, Baltimore
- Elijah Bosley (1740–1841) circa 1825, oil on canvas 73.66 cm x 62.23 cm, private collection, Virginia
- José Silvestre Rabello, in 1826, oil on canvas, 70.5 x 89.2 cm, Brazilian Embassy Collection, Washington, DC
- Still Life: Grapes and Watermelon, 1828, oil on canvas, 36.2 x 48.3 cm, Maryland Historical Society, Baltimore
- Peaches and Grapes in a Porcelain Bowl, 1829, oil on canvas, 29.8 x 38.1 cm, Montclair Art Museum, Montclair, New Jersey
- Self-Portrait, 1830, oil on canvas, 68.6 x 50.8 cm, The Peale Museum, Baltimore City Life Museums
- Charles Lavalle Jessop (Boy on a Rocking Horse), 1840, oil on canvas, 90.1 x 106 cm
- Mrs. William Crane, 1840, 75,6 x 62,9 cm, San Diego Museum of Art, California
- Charlotte Ramsay Bobinson, 1840, oil on canvas, oval, 96.5 x 66 cm, The Peale Museum, Baltimore City Life Museums
- Henry Alexander Wise, 1842, oil on canvas, 74.9 x 62.2 cm, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond
- Senator Thomas Hart Benton, 1842, oil on canvas, 76.2 x 63.5 cm, Missouri Historical Society, Saint Louis
- Basket of Berries, 1860, oil on canvas, oval, 30.5 x 25.4 cm
- Senator Lewis Fields Linn, oil on canvas, Missouri Historical Society, Saint Louis
- Academician, Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, PA, USA (1824)
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Sarah Miriam Peale.|
- Maryland Art Source, The Baltimore Art Research & Outreach Consortium, 19 June 2003. Accessed Jan 2010
- Miller, Lillian B. (1996). The Peale family: creation of a legacy, 1770-1870. Abbeville Press. p. 240. ISBN 9780789202062.
- Dinner Party database of notable women at the Brooklyn Museum.
- Morgan, Ann Lee (2007). The Oxford dictionary of American art and artists. US: Oxford University Press. p. 367. ISBN 0-19-512878-8.
- King, Joan (1987). Sarah M. Peale: America's first woman artist. Branden Books. p. 296. ISBN 0-8283-1999-5.
- Smith, Barbara; Steinem, Gloria; Mink, Gwendolyn; Navarro, Marysa (1999). The Reader's Companion to U.S. Women's History. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. p. 438. ISBN 0-618-00182-4.
- Greer, Germaine (2001). The obstacle race: the fortunes of women painters and their work. Tauris Parke Paperbacks. p. 25. ISBN 1-86064-677-8.
- "Sarah M. Peale". Find a Grave Website. Nov 4, 2007. Retrieved 5 January 2010.
- "Anna Claypoole Peale". CLARA Database of Women in the Arts. National Museum of Women in the Arts. Archived from the original on 2010-11-26. Retrieved 2010-11-26.
In 1824, she and her sister Sarah Miriam became the first women to be elected members of the Pennsylvania Academy.
- "Sarah Peale". Dinner Party database of notable women. Brooklyn Museum. March 20, 2007. Retrieved 5 January 2010.
- Miller, Lillian B. The Peale Family: Creation of a Legacy 1770-1870. (Washington, D.C.: Abbeville Press), 1996. ISBN 0-7892-0206-9
- King, Joan (1 Dec 1987). Sarah M.Peale: America's First Woman Artist. U.S.: Branden Publishing Co. ISBN 0-8283-1999-5.
- Wilbur H. Hunter and John Mahey: Miss Sarah Miriam Peale: 1800–1885; portraits and still life; exhibition, February 5, 1967 through March 26, 1967, The Peale Museum, Baltimore, Maryland