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Portrait of Mrs Clabburn 1860
portrait of mrs clabburn 1860


Oil on mahogany panel.
44.8 x 34cm

Hannah Clabburn was the wife of one of Norwich's wealthiest industrialists, William Houghton Clabburn and Sandys has painted her here as a lively and confident young woman. Painted at the same time as 'Mary Elizabeth Barstow' and 'Adelaide Bedingfeld', this portrait is full of jewel-like colours and minute detail which show that Sandys still had the principles of the PRB in mind.

One of the most noticeable things is the amount of rich fabrics and patterns, from the beautiful lace collar of Mrs Clabburn's dress to the mass of oleander leaves behind her. The setting is obviously indoors but is rather staged looking - it is clear Sandys has posed his sitter. Hannah Clabburn gazes steadily out of the picture. Her eyes are very alert and there is the hint of a smile as if she might laugh or is sharing a joke with Sandys.

Bequeathed by R.J. Colman, 1946
Museum number  NWHCM : 1951.235.1211 : F

Image ©
Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery