CAULFIELD, MRS.

(fl. c. 1778)

Painter, Modeller, and Needle-worker

From A Dictionary of Irish Artists 1913

The Rev. Dr. Campbell, in his "Philosophical Survey of the South of Ireland," 1778, mentions a Mrs. Caulfield, of Merrion Street, Dublin, and says:—"This lady, from the mere resources of her own genius, has not only arrived at such a pitch of excellence in needle work, drawing of all sorts, painting in oil and water-colours, moulding of models both in clay and wax, as procured her the admiration of everybody, and the highest honours from the Dublin Society; but she has moreover struck out a new species of art. With a manly and happy boldness, departing from the beaten paths of practice, she has reached the summit of perfection in colouring by a peculiar combination of such mean materials as Taylor's Shapings. She began with fruits and flowers, which she soon executed to the temptation of both taste and skill. She next essayed on birds, which she has fledged in the most varying and glossy dyes of plumage. Encouraged by this success, astonishing to everybody but herself, she has at length advanced to human figures, and has animated her spirited designs with such warm tints of smiling innocence and rosy health as would strike a blush into the cheek of Rubens could he now see himself so far outdone." ! ! The subject of these eulogies was presented with a silver palette by the Dublin Society in February, 1774, "for the ingenious needle-work by her composed and performed."

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