Robert Henri: La Reina Mora

by Michael Andrew Marlais




1. Henri showed the painting at the 102nd Annual Exhibition of the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, January 21 - February 24, 1904. It was also in the 11th Annual Exhibition of the Carnegie Institute, April 11 - June 13, 1907, where it was illustrated in the catalogue. The painting appeared again in April, 1908 at the West Chester State Normal School in Chester Country, Pennsylvania. According to Henri's record book, now in the collection of Janet Le Clair, the painting was sold from the West Chester exhibition to a local collector by the name of Sharpless. The painting has been generally unavailable until its recent purchase in 1992 by the Colby College Museum of Art.

2. See Henri's address to the students of the School of Design for Women, Philadelphia, in 1901, in Robert Henri, The Art Spirit, Philadelphia, 1923, pp. 78-87; as well as his letter to the Art Students League class in 1915, ibid., pp. 20-33.

3. See Bennard Perlman, Robert Henri, His Life and Art New York, 1991, pp 69ff

4. Letter from Henri to his parents, Madrid, June 29, 1906, Beinecke Library.

5. Letter from Henri to his family, Madrid, September 18, 1906, Beinecke Library.

6. Henri Diary (Archives of American Art, reel 885), Thursday, September 6 and Friday, September 7, 1906.

7. Letter from Henri to his family, Seville, June 17, 1906.

8. Letter from Henri to John Sloan, Madrid, September 23, 1906, John Sloan Collection, Helen Farr Sloan Library, Delaware Art Museum.

9. Letter from Henri to his family, Madrid, September 18, 1906.

10. Letter from Henri to his family, Madrid, September 23, 1906, Beinecke Library.

11. Raymond Gros, ''The Art Exhibit As It Appeals," The Pittsburgh Leader, April 4, 1907.

12. Letter to Henri's family, September 18, 1906, and letter to Sloan, September 23, 1906. 13 Henri Diary (Archives of American Art, reel 885) Thursday, September

13. and Friday, September 14, 1906.

14. Letter from Henri to his family, Madrid, September 18, 1906. 15 Letter from Henri to his family, Madrid, September 23, 1906. In his diary Henri noted that Moreno canceled successive sittings on September 17th, 18th and 19th. On the 19th he began a "memory portrait" of her, using the bust-portrait as model. He noted that it was "unfinished" and neither this nor the second full-length portrait were recorded in the artist's record book.


About the Author

  • Michael Andrew Marlais is James M. Gillespie Professor of Art at Colby College, Waterville, ME

    Resource Library editor's note:

    The above essay was reprinted, without accompanying illustrations, in Resource Library on February 20, 2006 with the permission of the author.

    If you have questions or comments regarding the essay please contact the author directly through either this phone number or web address:

    This essay was also previously published in American Art Review, Volume V, Number 5, Fall, 1993.


    Readers may also enjoy these articles and essays:

    and from the San Diego Historical Society:

    and from Magazine Antiques Portraits by Henri, Nov, 2005 by Allison Eckardt Ledes

    and from the Archives of American Art

    and this video:

    and images of dozens of Robert Henri paintings including La Reina Mora courtesy of The Athenaeum by clicking here.

    Robert Henri's last name is pronounced as "HEN-rye."


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