This rare portrait of Wallis Simpson was painted in 1933 by American artist Walter Tittle. At the time Wallis was married to Ernest Simpson, whom she married in 1931, and it is likely that this portrait was commissioned by him. This portrait of Wallis Simpson was painted just prior to when Simpson met Prince Edward in 1934. Indeed, after Edward’s accession as King of the United Kingdom, Wallis divorced her second husband to marry Edward. The King’s desire to marry Simpson ultimately led to his abdication in December 1936 to marry ‘the woman I love’. After abdicating, the former King was made Duke of Windsor, by his brother, and married Wallis six months later.
Walter Tittle studied art under William Merritt Chase in New York, and during his career he lived and worked in both Britain and the United States. His work in etching , lithography and painting includes portraits of people such as Joseph Conrad, Arnold Bennett and George Bernard Shaw. Tittle was a member of the Royal Academy of Arts, London and has works in the National Portrait Gallery.
Howard Beilin Private Collection, New York