Gilbert Stuart was the foremost portrait painter of the newly formed United States. He painted many of the most prominent figures of his day, including the first five American presidents, but none of the thousand portraits he made attained such renown as the three he painted from life of George Washington and those he replicated to order throughout his later career. To most visitors to The Frick Collection, Stuart's George Washington is instantly recognizable; in a collection of mainly European masterpieces, it is the only painting of an American by an American. It was on view in the Cabinet Room through Spring 2002.
Anthony Van Dyck's Marchesa Giovanna Cattaneo was installed in the East Gallery following a cleaning by Hubert von Sonnenburg, Chairman of Paintings Conservation at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. The removal of old, discolored varnish revealed a luminous, richly colored canvas in which the rosy flush of the figure's cheeks, the resplendent shimmer of her satin garments, and the dazzling gold adornments emerge in poetic contrast to the velvety brownish-black background.