Portrait of Sir Frank Athelstane Swettenham

John Singer Sargent (1856–1925) was the most celebrated portraitist of his time. This portrait, commissioned by the Straits Association, commemorated Sir Frank Swettenham's (1850–1946) long service as Resident-General of the Federated Malay States (1896–1901) and Governor of the Straits Settlements (1901–1904). Swettenham is portrayed as a strong leader exuding power and authority. He is dressed in an immaculate white uniform and seated on a gilded armchair covered in Malay silk brocade. Visible above him, on the left, is the lower half of a globe on a gilt stand, showing a segment of the Malay States.