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First Communion, Chartres

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E. Charlton Fortune, American, (1885–1969)

First Communion, Chartres

ca. 1927
Oil on board
10 x 11.25 x 0.75 in. (25.4 x 28.575 x 1.905 cm)
Bequest of Monsignor Robert E. Brennan
Accession Number: 1987.012

What immediately draws our attention here is the red vestment on the figure to the right of the Bishop. It stands out in relation to the white dresses and veils of the little girls about to receive their first communion. Fortune and her mother would have visited Chartres before returning to California. Effie (as she was known) was a deeply devout Catholic. In 1928 she abandoned secular subjects altogether and founded what she called The Monterey Guild for the purpose of making liturgical arts to adorn Roman Catholic Churches.

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