Portrait of the Children of Lord George Cavendish, Thomas Lawrence
Thomas Lawrence
Portrait of the Children of Lord George Cavendish
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Thomas Lawrence

Portrait of the Children of Lord George Cavendish, 1790

198.2 x 147.5 x 3.2 cm
Physical Description
Oil on canvas
Inventory Number
On permanent loan from Adolf und Luisa Haeuser-Stiftung für Kunst und Kulturpflege since 2002
Not on display


About the Work

By not forcing the usual role models onto Lord Cavendish’s children, Thomas Lawrence was departing from the traditional children’s portrait. Although the patron was a high-ranking aristocratic officer, the boys are not made to pose as future generals, nor the little girl as a cultivated upper-class lady. On the contrary, they are seen in the wild, in the midst of play. Even if the scene has been arranged, each child exhibits the behaviour befitting his or her age and temperament – quite in keeping with the educational concepts of the Enlightenment.

About the Acquisition

Privy Councillor Adolf Haeuser made a fortune serving the Farbwerke Hoechst company as a legal advisor. As stipulated in their wills, after the deaths of Adolf Haeuser in 1938 and his wife, Luisa, in 1953, their property was distributed among several charitable foundations which were to be newly established, including the Adolf und Luisa Haeuser-Stiftung for the cultivation of art and culture. This foundation has since acquired a number of paintings which are on loan to the Städel. The museum also received paintings from the Haeusers’ private estate.

Audio & Video

  • Basic information
  • Focus on cultural history
  • Focus on material
ASK AN ARTWORK – Fragen an die Kunst: Thomas Lawrence
Thomas Lawrence malte 1790 das „Bildnis der Kinder des Lord George Cavendish“ und schickte die Kinder buchstäblich eine Runde an die frische Luft. Warum sehen wir die Kinder im Wald und nicht etwa vor einem repräsentativen Anwesen? Im Bildnis von Thomas Lawrence verstecken sich einige Hinweise auf die im 18. Jahrhundert neuen Konzepte von Erziehung. Was das eventuell auch mit Mode zu tun haben könnte, erklärt Anna. In der Serie ASK AN ARTWORK beantwortet die Kunsthistorikerin Anna Huber (Mitarbeiterin der Abteilung Bildung und Vermittlung) aus dem Home Office Fragen, die wir an die Kunst haben. Denn während der Coronakrise kommt das Städel zu euch: #StaydelAtHome #HomeOffice Thomas Lawrence, Bildnis der Kinder des Lord George Cavendish, 1790 in der Digitalen Sammlung: https://sammlung.staedelmuseum.de/de/werk/bildnis-der-kinder-des-lord-george-cavendish Thomas Lawrence painted the "Portrait of the Children of Lord George Cavendish" in 1790 and literally sent the children out to get some fresh air. Why do we see the children in the forest and not in front of a prestigious estate? The portrait of Thomas Lawrence hides some hints about concepts of education that were new in the 18th century. Anna also explains what this could possibly have to do with fashion. In the series ASK AN ARTWORK art historian Anna Huber (Educational Department of the Städel Museum) answers the questions that we have for art. Find Thomas Lawrence's "Portrait of the Children of Lord George Cavendish" in our Digital Collection: https://sammlung.staedelmuseum.de/en/work/portrait-of-the-children-of-lord-george-cavendish

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