Frances Tasker Carter
The elegantly garbed Frances Tasker Carter stands for a portrait probably after her marriage in April 1754 to Robert Carter III of Nomini Hall plantation in Westmoreland County. Frances Carter was the daughter of Benjamin Tasker, longtime president of the Council of Maryland. The marriage combined two families with substantial fortunes.
John Wollaston Jr., an artist trained in London, painted the portrait. Wollaston came to the English colonies in 1749 and worked chiefly in New York and Virginia. An itinerant artist, he became one of the premier portraitists in America, though he was much better at painting stylish dresses and jewelry than faces. Wollaston had a noted tendency to endow his subjects with eyes that were unnaturally slanted, as seen here in his painting of Frances Carter; this led to his being referred to as "the almond-eyed artist."