Musée No:737.254Regular price $32.27
Artist: Joanna Boyce Wells
Joanna Boyce Wells, (1831-1861), was a British painter linked to the Pre Raphaelite movement. She first exhibited her work at the Royal Academy in 1855 and was much admired by John Ruskin and Ford Madox Brown. Rossetti described her as "a wonderfully gifted woman." Sadly she died young, at the age of only 30, after the birth of her third child.
The sitter : The beautiful and enigmatic Fanny Eaton was a popular artists model in the late 1800s, especially linked to the Pre Raphaelite movement. She was born in Jamaica in 1835. Sometime in the 1840s she and her mother made their way to England, but there is no mention at all of her father. She is listed as having been a domestic servant but did modelling work to supplement her income - she modelled for several artists including Dante Gabriel Rossetti. In 1857 she married James Eaton who owned and drove a horse drawn cab and together they had 10 children. She lived to the grand old age of 88. To mark Black History Month in October 2020, Prima magazine named Eaton as one of six Black British women – together with Margaret Busby, Claudia Jones, Mary Prince, Lilian Bader and Olive Morris – who "changed the world". On the 18 November 2020 she was commemorated with a Google Doodle.