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Oil on canvas
Framed: 90.5 x 78 x 6.5 cm (35 5/8 x 30 11/16 x 2 9/16 in.); Unframed: 76.2 x 64.8 cm (30 x 25 1/2 in.)
Gift of the John Huntington Art and Polytechnic Trust 1915.534
Had he been painted standing, you would be able to see Nathaniel Hurd's long silk robe, or banyan. He would not leave the house in this, or perform the work that gave him success as a silversmith.
Hurd was a prominent silversmith and engraver in Boston, and the warm gaze and unforced smile in his portrait by Copley suggest the friendship between the two artists. Hurd's open-collared shirt, as well as the rakishly tilted turban that covers his shaved head in place of a ceremonial powdered wig, create an air of informality that is unusual for a portrait of this time.
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