About the Artwork

In the mid-18th century, British artists developed a distinctive type of portraiture known today as the Grand Manner. Like this work, Grand Manner portraits were large in size, and meant to demonstrate the importance of a family’s lineage. Many were hung in the formal rooms and hallways of great British houses. Henrietta Read’s grandfather, a wealthy brewer, commissioned Gainsborough to paint this portrait – as well as those of other family members – as part of a dynastic display. In a pose that recalls 17th-century court portraits, Henrietta drapes part of her lilac gown over a stone plinth, providing a cushioned support for her elbow and revealing her white silk petticoat. The pink, cream, and charcoal of her delicate gown admirably complement her complexion and dark hair color, and provide a striking foil to her bold black eyebrows and dark brown eyes.

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About Our Prints

The Huntington Store Custom Prints offers exclusive custom reproductions of artworks in the collections of The Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens. Hand-made in the USA using gallery-quality materials, we create prints as true to the original work as possible, using strict color management protocols and state-of-the-art printing technology.
Many of the works offered through this store are exclusive and not available anywhere else. We are continually adding new artworks to our offering, so be sure to check back regularly as you build your own gallery. A variety of molding styles means our custom framed prints can match any type of decor.