About this artwork

This is one of a series of four similar paintings of a woman in a grey-blue cloak looking out to the left. One version belongs to the Yale Centre for British Art in New Haven, another to the Albright Knox Art Gallery in New York State, and another is in the National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa. The sitter is unknown, although she appeared in nearly fifty of Gwen John’s paintings – almost half of her paintings of women – between about 1915 and 1925. John mentioned her in letters on a few occasions, but did so dismissively, referring to her as ‘just a neighbor’.  The four variants of this painting are almost identical apart from slight differences in the position of the hands. In our version and the Yale version, the woman holds a rosary.

  • title:
    Portrait of a Girl in Grey
  • accession number:
    GMA 5648
  • artist:
  • gallery:
  • object type:
  • materials:
    Oil on canvas laid on plywood
  • date created:
    About 1918 - 23
  • measurements:
    67.31 x 48.30 cm (framed: 90.00 x 71.40 x 10.00 cm)
  • credit line:
    Purchased with assistance from the Henry and Sula Walton Fund and Art Fund, 2020

Gwen John

Gwen John