Study for the North and Side Walls, Sargent Hall

Preparatory studies

Although John Singer Sargent is known for the ease and facility with which he could produce a painting, in truth he worked at length on studies not only for entire compositions but also for individual figures and the smallest details of placement, gesture, and shading. He made hundreds of preparatory studies in graphite, charcoal, and oil for the Boston Public Library project, and also constructed a one-third-scale model of the Library’s Special Collections Hall in his London studio.
Study for the North Wall with Side Walls, Sargent Hall, Boston Public Library, 1890–95
Oil on canvas, 87.95 x 109.22 cm
Fogg Art Museum, Harvard University Art Museums, Gift of Mrs. Francis Ormond
The Triumph of Religion