Charles Willson Peale

1741-1827 America/Portraitist

 

Brief Biography-Charles Willson Peale of Pennsylvania was a saddler, watchmaker and taxidermist until he was twenty-six years old when he took instruction from John Singleton Copley in Boston. In 1767, he travelled to London and studied under Benjamin West. Back in America, he was involved in the War of Independence and was a member of the Pennsylvania Assembly. In 1780 he gave up politics, and two years later, he opened the first American art gallery in Philadelphia, and in 1805 he established the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. Peale painted several notable figures of the war and became the foremost American portraitist of his time. Of his three wives, he had seventeen children, of which there were many artists, some aptly named Raphaelle, Rubens, Sophonisba, Titian, Rembrandt, Angelica and Rosalba. His two sons Raphaelle and Rembrandt were the most noted artists of his family, and his brother James was a successful miniaturist painter of still-life. Charles Willson Peale painted the first of many portraits of President George Washington.

 

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Painting a
Miniature

James Peale Painting a Miniature

The Peale
Family

The Peale Family

Raphaelle
Peale

Raphaelle Peale

Exhuming the
First Mastodon

Exhuming the First American Mastodon

Henrietta
Bordley

Henrietta Maria Bordley at Age Ten

Charles
Pettit

Charles Pettit

George
Washington

George Washington

At the Battle
of Princeton

George Washington at the Battle of Princeton

Henry
Knox

Henry Knox

James
Wilkinson

James Wilkinson

Joseph
Brant

Joseph Brant

William
Clark

William Clark

Meriweather
Lewis

Meriweather Lewis

Nancy Hallam
as Fidele

Nancy Hallam as Fidele in Shakespeare's Cymbeline

Self-Portrait
with Angelica

Self-Portrait with Angelica and Rachel

The Artist in
His Museum

The Artist in His Museum