Joseph Whiting Stock was considered a primitive folk artist but as you can see by the painting here he was very adept at creating realistic portraits. When I looked over his work I noticed the same type of “odd atmosphere” in neo gothic haunting style of Ray Caesar, Jaime Zollars and others.
Stock’s name remains prominent in American art, Joseph Stock was born in Springfield, Massachusetts and lived and worked there most of his life, painting more than 900 works during his brief career. He sometimes shared a studio with photographer O.H. Cooley and may have used some of his photographs in his portraits.
An accident at the age of eleven left Joseph Whiting Stock crippled from the waist down. He began to study art on the advice of a physician when he was 17 and had wheelchair specially designed for him so he could begin a career as an itinerant portrait painter. He worked in Connecticut, Rhode Island, and eastern Massachusetts.
In 1839, he was badly burned when heating some varnish, and was operated on for a bone infection.
Ill-health probaly forced him to return to Springfield in 1844. He died of tuberculosis at the age of 40.