Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
Portrait Study of a Man, Facing Right, ca. 1634
Oil on canvas, with paper extensions on each side
25 × 19 1/2 in. (63.5 × 49.5 cm)
A group of five head studies in oil on canvas survive for a now destroyed group portrait of Brussels magistrates, some of which can be related to figures in the composition sketch. This study, for instance, may represent the second man from the left in the sketch. The number of sitters and the large scale of the final painting must have made it hard to paint directly from life on the canvas, as was Van Dyck’s probable method when working on smaller portraits.