Thomas Hovenden, Woman Leaning on a Door, Study for “Bringing Home the Bride”

Graphite on paper
Credit Line
Woodmere Art Museum: Gift of Mr. Stiles Tuttle Colwill, 2018
11 ½ in. x 8 in.

The figure depicted in this study for Bringing Home the Bride is a woman who watches as a bride visits her new husband’s family home for the first time. The woman is a servant who is supposed to unload the couple’s belongings. Instead, she peeks into the room from the doorway. In this drawing, the woman peers meekly round the frame of the door, but in the final painting she stands unhidden in the doorway, her face looking toward the bride.

Critics praised Hovenden’s use of color and light in the painting. Indeed, it shows the influence of Impressionism, not on the style of the work but on the artist’s treatment of the golden light flooding into the cheery room through the window.


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