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The Winter Art Show

May 2024
1min read

In 1912 the Art Association of Richmond, Indiana, commissioned a renowned Hoosier, William Merritt Chase, to paint a small self-portrait. When the 1913 deadline came and went, the association’s director exerted what moral pressure she could by granting a year’s extension and suggesting various still-life elements for the painting. Contrite, Chase agreed. Two more deadlines passed; the director made two more sets of suggestions. When in 1916 she finally met Chase to collect the dilatory painting, she was astounded by the masterful work. Three times larger than the commissioned size, the portrait not only depicts the artist’s forceful character but also demonstrates the evolution of his technique and even includes the requested still-life items.

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