Christiana Emma Gore

Jacob Spornberg 1809


Jacob Spornberg was one of almost twenty artists working in Bath during the 1790s as listed in the New Bath Guides. Bath was then at the height of its popularity as a spa resort with a steady influx of well-heeled visitors arriving to take the waters. Given that a fair proportion of these artists specialised in painting portrait miniatures and/or profiles, it must have been difficult to stand out. But Spornberg was creative and had developed two distinctive styles of miniature profiles, one “executed in the Etruscan Manner” in vermilion red and black, the other “in cameo”, a more subtle style where a sepia portrait stands against a black background.

This profile is painted in the cameo style on an ivory base. Unlike the usual silhouette, the lady’s features and hair are delineated including her decorative bandeau and pearl drop earring. A faded inscription on the reverse names her as Christiana Emma Gore. The artist has also signed and dated the portrait – “J. Spornberg / Cheltenham / and at / No. 5 Old Bond St. / Bath / 1809”.

The profile is housed in the original papier-mâché frame with a decorative surround, convex glass and a grapes hanger. It is in fine original condition.

Item Ref. 6606

Size: framed, 143 x 122mm (5⅝ x 4⅝")