This double portrait shows Charlotte Stuart (seated at the piano) and her younger sister, Louisa. They were the daughters of Charles, Lord Stuart de Rothesay, British Ambassador to France from 1815 to 1824 and from 1828 to 1830. Charlotte and Louisa were born at the Ambassador's Residence in Paris in 1817 and 1818 respectively. This portrait was painted in Paris in 1830 and is now on display in the Ambassador's Residence there, where the sitters were brought up.
Charlotte married Charles Canning, son of the Prime Minister George Canning, in 1835. She became a Lady of the Bedchamber to Queen Victoria and accompanied her husband to India when he was made Governor General in 1855. Louisa married Henry de la Poer Beresford, 3rd Marquess of Waterford, in 1842. She was an artist and philanthropist, and counted John Ruskin and George Frederic Watts among her friends. Sir George Hayter painted a double portrait of Charlotte and Louisa, as well as a portrait of their father, the Ambassador. All three paintings are owned by the Government Art Collection and are on display at the British Ambassador's Residence in Paris.
George Hayter was born in London. He entered the Royal Academy Schools in 1808 and later taught drawing and painting to Princess Charlotte, daughter of the Prince Regent. In 1815 he was made Painter of Miniatures and Portraits to Charlotte and her husband, Prince Leopold. In the next year he travelled to Italy with the support of the Duke of Bedford and entered the Accademia di San Luca as its youngest ever member. Although Hayter returned to London in 1818, he moved back to Italy in 1826 and was in Paris from 1828 to 1831. Hayter settled in England in the early 1830s, was appointed Principal Painter-in-Ordinary to Queen Victoria in 1841 and knighted the following year. Despite his successes, he was never admitted to the Royal Academy.
Elizabeth, Lady Stuart de Rothesay and her Daughters, Charlotte (later Countess Canning) and Louisa (later Marchioness of Waterford)
Oil on canvas
height: 145.00 cm, width: 114.00 cm
Purchased from Colnaghi's, October 1987
Commissioned by Lord Stuart de Rothesay (1779-1845); by descent to watercolour painter and philanthropist Louisa Anne Beresford (née Stuart), Marchioness of Waterford (1818-1891); by descent to army officer Edward James Montagu-Stuart-Wortley (1857-1934); by descent to Montagu Henry Edmund Cecil Towneley-Bertie, 13th Earl of Lindsey and 8th Earl of Abingdon (1887-1963) and Elizabeth Valetta Towneley-Bertie, Countess of Abingdon, of Highcliffe Castle, Dorset; by whom sold through Christie’s, London, on 5 July 1949, ‘Contents of Highcliffe Castle’ sale (Lot 756); from which sale purchased by ‘Hart’ for £75.12.0; with Colnaghi, London; from whom purchased by the Government Art Collection in October 1987
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