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Belshazzar's Feast, between 1817 and 1843

  • Washington Allston, American, 1779-1843

Oil on canvas

  • Unframed: 144 1/8 × 16 feet 1/8 inches (3 m 66.1 cm × 4 m 88 cm)
  • 164 inches × 18 feet × 9 1/2 inches (4 m 16.6 cm × 5 m 48.6 cm × 24.1 cm)

Gift of the Allston Trust

55.515

On View

  • American W284

Department

American Art before 1950

until 1955, The Allston Trust

1955-present, gift to the Detroit Institute of Arts (Detroit, Michigan, USA)

Dunlap, William. A History of the Rise and Progress of the Arts of Design in the United States Volume 2. New York, 1834, pp. 181, 184-185. Spears, Thomas T. Description of the Grand Historical Picture of Belshazzar’s Feast Painted by Washington Allston and Now Exhibiting at the Corinthian Gallery. Boston, 1844. Jameson, Anna Brownell. “Washington Allston.” Anthenaeum 845 and 846 (January 6 and 13, 1844): pp. 39-40. Hunt, William Parsons. “Belshazzar’s Feast.” Christian Examiner, 37 (July 1844): pp. 49-57. Dearborn, A.H.S. “Allston’s Feast of Belshazzar.” Knickerbocker 24, 3 (September 1844): pp. 205-217. Ware, William. Lectures on the Work and Genius of Washington Allston. Boston, 1852, pp. 109-142. Inness, George. "A Painter on Painting." Harpers New Monthly Magazine 56 (1878): p. 460. Sweetser, Moses Foster. Allston. Boston, 1879, pp. 119-130. Dana, Richard Henry. “Allston and his Unfinished Picture Passages from the Journals of R. H. Dana.” Atlantic Monthly, 64 (November 1889): pp. 637-642. Flagg, Jared B. The Life and Letters of Washington Allston. New York, 1892, pp. 71-75, 144, 166-167, 250, 288, 304, 307-308, 327, 334-353. Crowe, Eyre. With Thackery in America. New York, 1893, pp. 72-73. Wright, Cuthbert. “The Feast of Belshazzar.” New England Quarterly, 10 (December 1937): pp. 620-634. Richardson, E.P. Washington Allston: A Study of the Romantic Artist in America. Chicago, 1948. Pp. 122-129. 152-155, no. 100 (pl. 40). Barker, Virgil. American Painting: History and Interpretation. New York, 1950, pp. 347-348. Gerdts, William H. “Washington Allston and the German Romantic Classicists in Rome.” The Art Quarterly, 32, 1 (Summer 1969): pp. 166-196. ____________. “Allston’s Belshazzar’s Feast I.” Art in America, 61, 2 (March-April 1973): pp. 59-66. ____________. “Belshazzar’s Feast II: That is his Shroud.” Art in America, 61, 3 (May-June 1973): pp. 58-65. American Narrative Painting. Exh. cat., Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Los Angeles, 1974, p. 11 (fig. 2). Johns, Elizabeth. “Washington Allston: Method, Imagination, and Reality.” Winterthur Portfolio, 12 (1977): p. 7. Meservy, Anne Farmer. “The Role of Art in American Life: Critic’s Views on Native Art and Literature, 1839-1865.” American Art Journal, 10 (May 1978): p. 81. Davidson, Abraham. The Eccentrics and Other American Visionary Painters. New York, 1978, pp. 15-17. Johns, Elizabeth. “Washington Allston and Samuel Taylor Coleridge: A Remarkable Relationship.” Journal of the Archives of American Art, 19, 3 (1979): p. 5. Gerdts, William H. and Theodore E. Stebbins, Jr. A Man of Genius: The Art of Washington Allston (1779-1843). Exh. cat., The Museum of Fine Arts. Boston, 1979, pp. 134-156. Trustman, Deborah. “Secrets of an Exhibition.” Boston Sunday Evening Globe Magazine (January 20, 1980): pp. 22-23. Kasson, Joy S. Artistic Voyagers: Europe and the American Imagination in the Works of Irving, Allston, Cole, Cooper, and Hawthorne. Westport, CT, 1982, pp. 70-73, no. 1 (ill.). Lloyd, Phebe. “Washington Allston, American Martyr.” Art in America, 72, 3 (March 1984): p. 151. Dillenberger, John. The Visual Arts and Christianity in America. Decatur, GA, 1984, pp. 136-138, no. 5 (pl.93). Bjelajac, David. Millennial Desire and the Apocalyptic Vision of Washington Allston. Washington, D.C., 1988, p. 35 (ill.).

Washington Allston, Belshazzar's Feast, between 1817 and 1843, oil on canvas. Detroit Institute of Arts, Gift of the Allston Trust, 55.515.