Reflection in a Mirror
Medium: Oil on canvas
Dimensions: 90 x 60 cm
Inscription: Signed b.l. 'Helena Darmesteter'
Born in London in 1850, Helena Darmesteter (née Hartog) was the second child of five children, to parents Alphonse Hartog (1815-1904), and Marion Hartog (1821-1907, née Moss). Alphonse was a French teacher, while Marion was a successful writer, having articles published in numerous Jewish and Non-Jewish journals throughout her career. Marion also founded the first Jewish women’s periodical ever published, entitled The Jewish Sabbath Journal: A Penny and Moral Magazine for the Young (1854-5). Helena’s younger sister Cécile Sarah Hartog (1857-1940), whom she later painted, was a composer and pianist. Her older brother Numa Edward Hartog (1846-1871) went on to be the first Jewish Senior Wrangler at the University of Cambridge, while here younger brother Marcus Manual Hartog was a professor of Natural History and Zoology, and her other brother Philip Joseph Hartog (1864-1947) became a chemist and educationalist.
Helena moved to Paris as a student, training under French painter Gustave Courtois (1853-1923). In 1877, she married Arsène Darmesteter, Professor of Philology and Mediaeval French at the Sorbonne. She became an established portrait painter exhibiting in the Salons and in the Exposition Universelle in Paris in 1900. She was a member of the Société des Artistes Français and of the Société Nationaledes Beaux-Arts. Her paintings were exhibited at the Royal Academy Summer Exhibitions in 1907 and 1908.
Born: 1850 London, England
Died: 1940 Paris, France