ArtStory: Portrait of Ariantje Coeymans

What is ArtStory?

ArtStory is like story time, but with art instead of a book. Join us for these short presentations on works from the museum's collection and have fun "reading" art! Interested in reading art on your own? Here are some tips to get you started!

ArtStory: Portrait of Ariantje Coeymans

This ArtStory explores the eighteenth-century "Portrait of Ariantje Coeymans Verplanck" which has been attributed to Nehemiah Patridge (1938.5).

Ariantje Coeymans Verplanck (1718 or 1722-1724) Attributed to Nehemiah Partridge

Interested in more information about this portrait?  Here is the description from the curator's:

"This monumental portrait is believed to be the first life-size, full-length likeness of a woman in colonial America. It was probably inspired by a comparable portrait of the first mayor of Albany, the most powerful figure in the Upper Hudson Valley at the time. Ariantje Coeymans Verplanck was powerful in her own right, having inherited and purchased land with houses, barns, and mills. She and her brother, Samuel, built one of the largest Dutch-style houses in the Upper Hudson Valley. This portrait was created by an itinerant painter who traveled around New England representing members of patrician families. It may have been painted on the occasion of Ariantje's marriage, at age fifty-one, to a man twenty-three years her junior. This seems probable given that she holds a rose (a traditional symbol of love) and prominently displays a ring. She is depicted in artist Nehemiah Partridge's characteristic style with quick, visible brushstrokes and a palette of black, brown, blue, and rust."


Photo Credit: Ariantje Coeymans Verplanck (1672-1743) Attributed to Nehemiah Partridge (1683-about 1737) ca. 1718 or 1722-1724 Oil on canvas Bequest of Miss Gertrude Watson, 1938.5.