Eliza, the lovely daughter of Ralph Izard, Jr., was painted twice by Malbone during his December 1801May 1802 visit to Charleston. Her mother is identified in Malbone's account book for December, 1801, as paying $275, probably for three or four portraits. During this time Eliza was being courted by Thomas Pinckney who was most eager for her to be painted by Malbone. They married in December, 1803.
A good example of the "fair becoming still fairer," the miniature of Eliza verges on a romantic interpretation, in the manner of Cosway. The hair softly piled high, the faraway, dreamy gaze and the cloudy background all relate to the style of the English master whom Malbone is known to have admired. However, through the brush-stroke and coloring, Malbone has given the sitter substance and credibility.
This text is adapted from Martha Severens "The Miniature Portrait Collection of the Carolina Art Association" published by the Carolina Art Association, 1984
Artist's Dates: 1777 - 1807
b: Newport, RI
d: Savannah, GA