Portrait-President Abraham Lincoln, pastels 1860

Color charcoal portrait of President Abraham Lincoln 1860. A few weeks before the presidential election, Lincoln receives a letter from an 11-year old girl from New York. She writes: “I have got 4 brothers, and part of them will vote for you any way and if you let your whiskers grow I will try and get the rest of them to vote for you. You will look a great deal better for your face is so thin. All the ladies like whiskers and they would tease their husbands to vote for you and then you would be president.” — signed, Grace Bedell.
Just after he wins the election, Lincoln begins to grow a beard and it remains a distinctive part of his image. Strong and soft textures define the famous face along with a rough overall finish to the features. His grey blue eyes set in contrast to the warm colors thereby defining his unique personality of strength and mercy. Original painting by St. Louis artist/illustrator David R. Zamudio.

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Original in private collection via The Saint Louis Artists’ Guild Collectors Choice committee.