The Last Limner? Who Painted my Great Great Grandma?
In summer 1860, an artist drove into Bethel, Upstate New York, with a buckboard full of exquisite portraits with missing faces. The townsfolk rushed to pick out the one they wanted and have their face filled in. The artist stayed all summer without signing his work or telling anyone his name. My research turned up the Hudson River School in Greenwich Village at the 10th Street Studios, but I could not find any examples of a similar M.O. As this was clearly a trained (probably Europe) artist, I'm guessing he was between commissions and needed to lower his prices without anyone knowing. Maybe Thomas Buchanan Read? Anyway, I wrote a novel about a fictional artist which has just come out, but I would still like to know who the real artist was. Anyone heard of a similar M.O. or have any suggestions?