Henry Augustus Loop

(9 September 1831 - 1895)

Henry Augustus Loop was educated in Great Barrington, Massachusetts. In 1850, he settled in New York and studied for a year in the studio of Henry Peters Gray. He went to Paris in 1856, studying there under Thomas Couture. By 1859, Loop had returned to New York, after touring France and Italy. He married his pupil Jennie Harrison late in 1864. Their professional lives became intertwined. The couple went to Europe in 1867, for about eighteen months, visiting Rome, Paris, and Venice. They both showed works in the Paris Salon of 1869. After returning to America that year, they lived and shared a studio in New York and spent summers in their house in Lakeville, Connecticut, and later in Lake George, New York.

Loop first exhibited at the National Academy in 1851, and except for 1869, 1888, and 1889, was represented with several works in every annual exhibition until the year of his death. Portraiture was his speciality, as was reflected by the majority of sumbissions. Yet he also used the Academy shows to demonstrate his work in landscape and idealized figure subjects. His Academy eulogy, however, focused on the portraits and on his personality:
Loop's obituary, read at the Annual Council meeting of May 13, 1896, adds the following insights into his career and personality: The name of Henry August Loop N.A., brings back most vividly to our minds his gentle nature, and his kind hearted personality which made him always welcome at our social gatherings, and gave him such a hold on our affections... He received his education in Great Barrington, Mass. and came to New York City in 1850, where for a year he was a pupil of Henry Peters Gray N.A. He studied under Thomas Coatun (sic) in Paris - In 1857 he visited Europe again studying in Paris, Rome, Venice, and Florence... Soon after his election he acquired an enviable reputation as a portrait painter to which branch of Art he chiefly devoted himself... The last portrait exhibited by Mr. Loop in the 69th Annual Exhibition of 1894, was one of his youngest daughter Jennie, which won much praise for him from his fellow Academicians.

H. W. French, Art and Artists in Connecticut, 1879; G. W. Sheldon, American Painters, 1881; National Academy of Design minutes, May 13, 1896.

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Henry Augustus Loop (1831-1895)
After receiving his early education in Great Barrington, Massachusetts, Henry Augustus Loop settled in New York City in 1850, where he studied for one year in the studio of Henry Peters Gray. In 1856, the artist travelled to Paris where he studied with Thomas Couture. By 1859, Loop had returned to New York City after touring France and Italy. The artist again visited Europe in 1867, remaining there for eighteen months before taking permanent residence in New York. Loop's wife, Jeannette Shepherd Harrison Loop, was also an artist with whom he shared a studio. The artist kept a summer residence at Lake George, where he died in 1895. Loop is known primarily for his portraits. His romantic, idealizing style caused many newly elected associates to choose him as their portraitist. Loop began exhibiting at the N.A.D. in 1851. Soon after his election he acquired and enviable reputation as a portrait painter to which branch of Art he chiefly devoted himself. He continued to exhibit almost annually throughout the remaining forty-four years of his life.

© National Academy Museum

Jennette Shepherd Harrison Loop (1840-1909)
Jennie Loop came from a distinguished Connecticut family. She studieed in New Haven under the painter George Durrie and Wales Hotchkiss. She had set up a protraiture practice in New Haven before coming to New York in 1863, to continue her studies with Henry A. Loop, whom she wed the following year. In 1867, the couple went overseas for an extended stay, visiting Paris, Rome, and Venice. While abroad, the young Mrs. Loop pursued her art studies, although whether she enrolled in any formal school or atelier is not recorded. Both she and her husband showed works in the Paris Salon in 1869.

Exhibiting as Mrs. Henry Augustus Loop, she was first represented in an Academy annual in 1866, and showed in the 1867 annual as well. She did not participate again until 1871, but from that time until 1905, she rarely missed an annual. She appears to have become established as a professional portraitist rather quickly, children being her specialty. The Loops had four daughters. Edith, born in 1873, also became a portraitist.

Henry Augustus Loop
A.N.A. 1859; N.A. 1861
Birth: September 9, 1831, Hillsdale (Columbia County), Columbia County, New York, USA
Death: 1895, Lake George, Warren County, New York, USA
Family links:
- Parents:
- George Henry Loop (1809-1891)
- Angelica Downing Loop (1808-1897)
- Jennette Harrison Loop (1840-1909)
Burial: Methodist Episcopal Churchyard Cemetery, North Hillsdale, , Columbia County, New York, USA

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