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1874 Holyhead - 1949 London


Miss Stephen (Portrait of Virginia Woolf) - 1909


Drypoint on thin Japan paper. Signed in pencil. Collection stamp verso.  Sheet size: 39.7x26cm.  


Provenance: from the collection of Otto Gerstenberg (Lugt.2785).


Drypoint on thin Japan paper. Signed in pencil. Collection stamp verso. 

Sheet size: 39.7x26cm.  


Francis Dodd, RA: Miss Stephen (Portrait of Virginia Woolf)

  • In 1893 Dodd won the Haldane Scholarship which allowed him to travel extensively in continental Europe. After his return to England in 1895, Dodd was invited by Bernard Sickert to exhibit at the New English Art Club which brought him to the attention of a wider audience. He became a successful and highly regarded painter and etcher, active in the New English Art Club, a trustee of the Tate Gallery (1929-35), and a member of the Royal Academy of Arts, from 1935 until his death (by suicide) in 1949. He was introduced to the Stephen family and Clive and Vanessa Bell by the painter Henry Lamb. Dodd gave a complete collection of his prints to the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford in 1948.

    At the time of her sitting with the artist in 1907-08, Woolf (then Miss Stephen) was not yet a famous writer. In a letter to Violet Dickinson (June 3, 1907) she mentions her first sitting for Dodd, almost with amusement:
 ”Dodd, a little New English Club artist, half drunk and ecstatic, wishes to paint my portrait, and I am to sit in the afternoons from 2 to 4:30. Alone?”

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