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The sitter in this dramatic portrait is Polish artist Anna Bilinska-Bohdanowicz. Artist and sitter probably met in Paris in 1884, where Bilinska was studying on an art course for women. In this portrait, Anna is shown wearing typical mourning dress, with what may be a black feather fan resting on her lap. In 1884, Anna’s father had died leaving her impoverished. A year later her fiancé too died.
oil on canvas
H 128 x W 90.7 cm
BATVG : P : 1945.18
gift from Helen Lavinia Cochrane, 1945