Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641), one of the most celebrated and influential portraitists of all time, enjoyed an international career that took him from his native Flanders to Italy, France, and, ultimately, the court of Charles I in London. Van Dyck’s supremely elegant manner and convincing evocation of a sitter’s inner life — whether real or imagined — made him the favorite portraitist of many of the most powerful and interesting figures of the seventeenth century. This was the most comprehensive exhibition ever organized on Van Dyck’s activity and process as a portraitist and the first major exhibition on the artist to be held in the United States in over twenty years. Through approximately one hundred works, the exhibition explored the astounding versatility and inventiveness of a portrait specialist, the stylistic development of a draftsman and painter, and the efficiency and genius of an artist in action. Lenders included the Palazzo Pitti in Florence, the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna, the British Museum and National Gallery in London, the Prado Museum in Madrid, and major private collectors such as the Duke of Devonshire and the Duke of Buccleuch. Van Dyck: The Anatomy of Portraiture was organized by Stijn Alsteens, curator of Northern European drawings at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and Adam Eaker, Guest Curator at The Frick Collection. The exhibition catalogue, copublished with Yale University Press, features contributions by the curators as well as An Van Camp, Ashmolean Museum; Bert Watteeuw, Rubenianum, Antwerp; and Xavier F. Salomon, The Frick Collection.
Read a related blog post by Xavier F. Salomon, Peter Jay Sharp Chief Curator, about Van Dyck's Cardinal Guido Bentivoglio.