School of Art
Drawings and Water Colours / WD366
Pencil on white paper, mounted on card
190 x 210 mm.
Bequest: George Powell 1882
Ruth Herbert was an actress - her stage name being Louisa Herbert - and friend of Rossetti. The Powell inventory records ''Ruth Herbert, formerly manageress of St. James' Theatre, London''. She was manageress there until 1867. Powell wrote about this drawing in the 'College Magazine 1882-83': ''Pictures of this noblest of artist-poets being of such extreme rarity and immense value, it has taken me five years of constant search to find this very interesting specimen''. The drawing imitates the format of an Italian Renaissance portrait with a symbolic branch and ANNO XXV giving her age. Other drawings and watercolours of Herbert are known.
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Portrait of the actress Ruth Herbert. Head and shoulders, face-on portrait of a young woman with dark, shoulder length hair who holds a sprig in her right hand and rests her arms on a balustrade. Tonal drawing in soft pencil