- Museum number
Portrait of Mr De Camp, actor, as Coupée in "The Virgin Unmask'd"; whole-length wearing striped coat and knee breeches, fiddle in raised left hand, hat in his r, his right leg raised in dancing posture to right. 1806
Graphite with watercolour with red chalk
- Production date
Height: 358 millimetres
Width: 225 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- The following text is from S Lloyd and K Sloan, The Intimate Portrait, BM and NGS, 2008, no. 182:
Vincent de Camp (1777-1839) was the brother of Maria Theresa De Camp who married the famous actor Charles Kemble in 1806, and was thus also the sister-n-law of John Kemble and of their sister, Mrs Siddons. The De Camps were born in Vienna to a musician and a dancer and were brought to London as children. Maria Theresa appeared on stage from the age of eight in ballet before she began to perform at Drury Lane and Haymarket from 1786 and had her first great success in the Beggar’s Opera and as Biddy in ‘Miss in her ’Teens’ [6.32]. She was good looking, intelligent and diligent and only married Kemble after a long courtship, appearing with his family afterwards in Covent Garden.
De Wilde painted Vincent De Camp several times, including as Hasssaran in 'The Forty Thieves', 1808 (watercolour, Bonham’s, London, 5 June 2001, lot 203) and when he was the original Master Heartwell in ‘Riches or the Wife and Brother’ in 1810, in oil (Garrick). 'The Virgin unmasked' was based on the comedy 'An old man taught wisdom' by Henry Fielding in 1735.
The British Museum has a collection of twenty-three watercolours by De Wilde from around 1805 to 1817 similar to the three exhibited here, all with no or plain dark backgrounds and of a variety of actors and actresses, including the Kembles. Most of them entered the collection with this one as part of an unknown gift or bequest before 1837.
SELECTED LITERATURE: LB 6; J Knight, rev. K.A. Crouch, ‘Maria Theresa De Camp’, Oxford DNB [article 15323, accessed 26 Nov. 2007]
- Not on display
- Exhibition history
1949 Jul-Sep, Port Sunlight, Lady Lever AG, 'Art and the theatre', no.39
1974 July-Dec, BM, Portrait Drawings, no.269
2008/9 Oct-Jan, Edinburgh, SNPG, 'The Intimate Portrait', no. 182
2009 Mar-May, London, BM, Room 90, 'The Intimate Portrait'
- Associated titles
Associated Title: Virgin Unmask'd
- Acquisition date
- 1837 (before)
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number