John Singer Sargent’s Timeless Portrait of President Teddy Roosevelt

John Singer Sargent is considered one of America’s greatest portrait artist of all time. So it should be no surprise that he was invited by the first family to the White House for a special portrait of President Theodore Roosevelt back in 1903. President Roosevelt was granted the presidency in 1901 when President McKinley was assassinated, he served in office until 1909.

It is a long standing tradition that each president has his portrait painted during his term by an esteemed artist at that time. Sargent’s portrait still hangs in the White House to this day.

The artist often complained about the difficulty in painting the president’s portrait. Trying to find the right location with enough light was a trial. They also struggled with fitting the sessions into Roosevelt’s busy schedule. The president was also known to have trouble with standing still for such long periods of time. The two men were both strong willed and that often clashed between them, but the final product was well worth it.

The White House is home to a large number of famous paintings, not just the Presidential portraits, but these hold a special place in the heart of the men who held that position. The Roosevelt portrait is considered one of the greatest in American art history and Sargent is applauded for it. You can see other great works by this artist in the John Singer Sargent Gallery we have.

About the Author

Amanda graduated from the University of Kansas, where she studied English literature and got a masters degree in library sciences. She enjoys reading, cooking and playing with her nephews. Her best friend is her little dog Brady.