Robert Henri


  • The Whitney's Collection: Selections from 1900 to 1965, Kids

    Robert Henri, Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney, 1916

    Robert Henri, Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney, 1916


    Narrator: This is a portrait of Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney. She was an artist, and the founder of the Whitney Museum. Robert Henri made this painting in 1916—over a hundred years ago. Think about the choices that Whitney and Henri made about how she appears here. For one thing, she’s looking at us very directly. She rests on the sofa with a sense of ease—and she’s wearing elegant silk pajamas. At the time, she would have looked like a very modern woman. In fact, she looked too modern for her husband, who thought it was scandalous that she had herself depicted wearing pants! He wouldn’t let her hang the painting in their mansion uptown. Instead, she displayed it in her studio in Greenwich Village.

Images and Permissions



A 30-second online art project:
Kristin Lucas, Speculative Habitat for Sponsored Seabirds

Learn more