How Copley Painted Women

Friday, March 19

4:00 p.m.



Free for CAM members; $10 for nonmembers

Erica Hirshler, Jane Kamensky 

How Copley Painted Women
Presented by Dr. Erica Hirshler and Jane Kamensky

In honor of Women’s History Month, the Cape Ann Museum welcomes historian Jane Kamensky, Trumbull Professor of American History, Harvard University and Dr. Erica Hirshler, Croll Senior Curator of American Paintings, MFA Boston to discuss how—and even why—the instrumental American portrait artist John Singleton Copley painted women.

With this presentation, the Museum continues the important and ongoing conversation about the way in which women have historically been portrayed in the fine arts. Beginning with John Singleton Copley’s 1770-72 original oil portrait of Judith Sargent Murray, currently on view in collaboration with the Terra Foundation for American Art and the Sargent House Museum, Kamensky and Hirshler will discuss a series of paintings that Copley made of women—young and old—in Boston and in London in the mid to late eighteenth century.

This Virtual Lecture is offered in conjunction with Our Souls Are by Nature Equal to Yours: The Legacy of Judith Sargent Murray. Visit our Video Vault to see additional lectures surrounding this important portrait.

→ View the full Virtual Lectures Series schedule and find links to past recordings here.


Erica Hirshler is the Croll Senior Curator of American Paintings, Art of the Americas, at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, MA.

Jane Kamensky, Trumbull Professor of American History at Harvard University, is the author of the prize-winning book, A Revolution in Color: The World of John Singleton Copley (2016).

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