Elizabeth Winthrop Chanler, John Singer Sargent,

Inner intensity

According to John Singer Sargent, the 26-year-old Elizabeth Winthrop Chanler had “the face of the Madonna, but the eyes of a child.”  Elizabeth’s mother died when she was young, so she was largely responsible for raising her seven younger brothers. 

In this portrait, she is presented as well-bred, but with an inner intensity in both her expression and hands not often found in other Sargent portraits.