You may not realize it, but you see a portrait painted by Gilbert Stuart practically every day. His George Washington portrait has appeared on the U.S. one-dollar bill for more than 100 years! He’s probably the most famous portraitist of the American Revolution with a portfolio that includes most of the Founding Fathers – Washington, Adams, Jefferson, Monroe, Madison, etc.
According to Wikipedia, his works can be found today at art museums throughout the United States and Great Britain, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., the National Portrait Gallery in London, and the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston.
According to the National Gallery of Art, because he portrayed virtually all the notable men and women of the Federal period in the United States, Gilbert Stuart was declared the “Father of American Portraiture” by his contemporaries.
To integrate music, below are mp3 clips from the album “Music of the American Revolution: The Birth of Liberty.” According to the New World Records website, this album “is a scholarly and well-programmed musical recreation of a defining moment in the nation’s history, mixing propaganda songs, psalmody, fife-and-drum music, and wind band music, the four types of music most prevalent and popular at the time.”
“The pieces on this disc have been chosen to illustrate some of the different kinds of music sung and played in the Colonies around the time of the Revolution. Sources for the music and texts of the pieces recorded are original wherever possible. No attempt has been made to recapture the untutored roughness with which much of the music was surely performed in its time. Rather, the goal has been to record polished performances by skilled singers and players,” reads the liner notes of the album.
If you’re planning to teach a lesson on portraits, consider referencing Gilbert Stuart. For added resource, below is a presentation by Martin Kalfatovic, a libraries coordinator and head of new media at the Smithsonian.