Past Exhibition

English Period

 
  • engraving of man and women dressed in lavish clothing, she hands him laurel wreath, with crowns to the side

    Robert van Voerst (1597–1635/36) after Anthony van Dyck
    Charles I and Henrietta Maria Holding a Laurel Wreath, 1634
    Engraving (second state)
    16 3/4 × 22 1/2 in. (42.2 × 57.1 cm)
    Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, The Royal Collection, Windsor

    The first collaboration between Robert van Voerst, a Dutch engraver established in England in 1627, and Van Dyck, this print was published in 1634, shortly after the painter’s arrival in London. The engraving after the double-portrait of Charles I and Henrietta Maria from 1632 is the largest and most ambitious print published during the painter’s lifetime and illustrates the printmaker’s admirably limpid technique. Van Voerst produced just four more engravings after Van Dyck, all for the Iconographie, before he succumbed to the plague.

  • painting of woman and man dressed lavishly, woman is handing him a laurel wreath

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    Charles I and Henrietta Maria Holding a Laurel Wreath, 1632
    Oil on canvas
    41 × 69 1/4 in. (104 × 176 cm)
    Archbishop’s Castle and Gardens, Kroměříž

    This double portrait represents a key moment in Van Dyck’s English career. The commission had initially been given to the Dutchman Daniel Mytens, the leading court artist before Van Dyck’s arrival in England, but his painting must not have satisfied his patron, for it was eventually replaced by Van Dyck’s new version. Van Dyck deviates remarkably little from Mytens’s model while improving every aspect of it: the liveliness of the painting, the interaction — at once tender and formal — between the royal pair and between the queen and the viewer, the added interest of the background, and the magnificent harmony of colors. In the year of this triumph, Van Dyck was knighted and appointed "principalle Paynter" of the king while Mytens left England and returned to his native Holland.

  • black chalk portrait sketch of man with large brimmed hat, long hair, mustached and pointed beard

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    Portrait Study of Charles I, ca. 1632–36
    Black chalk
    18 7/8 × 14 3/8 in. (47.9 × 36.5 cm)
    Rijksprentenkabinet, Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam; purchased with the support of the Vereniging Rembrandt

    The absence of large, detailed drawn head studies of the men and women portrayed by Van Dyck can best be explained by a preference to work directly in oils when he had the sitter in front of him. This impressive sheet is a notable exception. The searching chalk lines recording the king’s haunting features, including his heavily pouched eyelids and curling moustache, indicate that the study was made from life. The drawing may have served as the model for the central head of Charles I in a famous painting.

  • black and white chalk sketch of woman standing in dress with hat, and no face, on blue paper

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    Queen Henrietta Maria with Jeffery Hudson, 1633
    Black chalk, red and yellow (fabricated?) chalks, heightened with white chalk, on blue paper
    16 1/2 × 10 1/8 in. (41.9 × 25.5 cm)
    École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts, Paris

    In preparing his portrait of Henrietta Maria, Van Dyck drew this study of her costume. The absence of any close study of the queen’s facial features suggests the drawing may have been made from a hired model wearing a garment lent to the studio. The use of colored chalks to record certain details of the queen’s dress is almost unique in Van Dyck’s drawn oeuvre. Entirely focused on the fall of fabric and the brilliant highlights in the riding clothes, the drawing gives only the most summary indication of the queen’s surroundings or her attendant.

  • painting of woman in lavish blue dress, and black hat, with small person and monkey,  next to gold curtain and crown

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    Queen Henrietta Maria with Jeffery Hudson, 1633
    Oil on canvas
    86 1/4 × 53 1/16 in. (219.1 × 134.8 cm)
    National Gallery of Art, Washington; Samuel H. Kress Collection

    Charles I’s queen, Henrietta Maria, was the youngest child of Henri IV of France and Maria de’ Medici. In England, her lifelong devotion to the Catholic faith proved to be a major impediment to her popularity. Nevertheless, she served as the emotional mainstay of her husband’s life and provided an important cultural link among England, France, and the papal court at Rome. This is one of Van Dyck’s earliest portraits of the queen. He assimilates her into an English tradition of depicting queens in hunting dress, and a pan-European practice of representing royalty in the company of dwarves — in this case, Jeffery Hudson, a famous member of the queen’s retinue.

  • oil painting of young girl with pearls, next to face of baby girl, both in white bonnets

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    The Princesses Elizabeth and Anne, Daughters of Charles I, 1637
    Oil on canvas
    11 3/4 × 16 1/2 in. (29.8 × 41.8 cm)
    Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh; purchased with the aid of the Heritage Lottery Fund, the Scottish Office and the Art Fund 1996

    This is one of the very few surviving oil sketches by Van Dyck for which the related finished portrait still survives. Each of the heads in the complete portrait — representing the five eldest children of King Charles I — must have been based on a similar sketch done from life, whereas the overall composition and individual poses would have been prepared with chalk on paper or in oil on panel. The number of heads in the painting, as well as the challenge of having young children sit still, probably led Van Dyck to make the head studies separately. With admirable economy, he made sure that the sketch contained sufficient information regarding the children’s physiognomy, in the process creating a masterpiece of rapid observation.

  • oil painting portrait of young royal boy dressed in red and gold and young royal girl in silver dress, standing, holding hands, circa 1642

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    Prince William of Orange and Mary, Princess Royal, 1641
    Oil on canvas
    71 7/8 × 55 7/8 in. (182.5 × 142 cm)
    Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam

    The marriage of William of Orange and Mary, daughter of Charles I and Henrietta Maria, provided an important link between the English court and the Dutch Republic. In this smoothly executed formal wedding portrait, Van Dyck depicts the two children with linked hands, calling attention to the princess’s wedding ring. The reversal of the traditional hierarchical placement of the husband on the left and wife on the right may reflect Mary’s superior status as the daughter of a king. Account books record William’s many purchases on the occasion of his wedding, including the diamond brooch for Mary and suit of pink silk faithfully reproduced here.

  • black chalk sketch of man in ruffled clothing with young boy at his side

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    Portrait Study of Endymion Porter and His Son Philip, ca. 1632–33
    Black chalk, heightened with white chalk, on buff paper
    12 ½ × 9 1/2 in. (31.7 × 24.1 cm)
    The British Museum, London

    A prominent courtier and friend of Van Dyck’s, Endymion Porter is depicted with his youngest son, Philip, who was about five when this masterful study was made. The drawing corresponds to the left part of a family portrait of Porter and his wife and was probably made from life to capture the interaction between the figures and the complexities of their costume. The fingers of Porter’s hand resting on the pommel of a sword are drawn twice at right. A second drawing of young Philip, which may have preceded the present sheet, is displayed here.

  • two black chalk sketches of young boy with arm outstretched

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    Two Portrait Studies of Philip Porter, ca. 1632–33
    Black chalk on buff paper
    Statens Museum for Kunst, Copenhagen

    This sketch prepares the figure of Philip Porter in the family portrait. A more worked out and probably later study for the same painting is shown here. Taken together, the studies present a unique case in Van Dyck’s extant oeuvre, one that suggests the artist prepared the poses of these sitters with greater care than is documented for other portraits. The verso of the drawing contains Van Dyck’s study of the costume worn by Philip’s oldest brother, George, in the same painting.

  • black chalk sketch, on its side, of male's clothed upper body and hands

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    Study of the Upper Body and Hands of George Porter, ca. 1632–33
    Black chalk on buff paper
    Statens Museum for Kunst, Copenhagen

    Displayed here on its side, this is Van Dyck’s detailed study for the costume and hands holding gloves of George Porter, the eldest son of the courtier Endymion Porter and the second figure from the right in Van Dyck’s portrait of the Porter family. The drawing does not include George’s head, which Van Dyck must have studied separately, either in chalk or (more likely) in an oil sketch. The recto of this sheet contains two studies of George’s youngest brother for the same composition.

  • black chalk portrait sketch of man with beard

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    Thomas Howard, Earl of Arundel, Turned to the Right, ca. 1635–36
    Black chalk, heightened with white chalk, on blue paper
    9 1/2 × 8 1/2 in. (24.2 × 21.6 cm)
    The British Museum, London

    Despite its smaller size, simpler format, and the lack of finish in the costume, this head study of Lord Arundel is as unforgettable in conveying the strong personality and lively intelligence of its sitter as the larger drawing here. In both sheets, Arundel wears the insignia of the Order of the Garter on a ribbon.

  • black and white chalk sketch of man seated with drapery-like clothing and holding stick and paper

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    Thomas Howard, Earl of Arundel, Seated, ca. 1635–36
    Black chalk, heightened with white chalk, on gray-brown paper
    19 × 13 7/8 in. (48.4 × 35.3 cm)
    The British Museum, London

    A leading aristocrat and art patron in Caroline England, Thomas Howard, Earl of Arundel, was portrayed several times by Van Dyck, as well as by Peter Paul Rubens. Representing his formidable presence with exceptional immediacy, this drawing does not correspond directly to any of Van Dyck’s portraits of the "Collector Earl" but was undoubtedly made from life with a larger composition in mind. The drawing may be a rejected idea for a lost painting that showed a seated Arundel with his wife, Aletheia Talbot, and their family.

  • black and white chalk sketch of three men standing on stairs, on blue paper

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    Portrait Study of James, William, and John Herbert, Standing on Stairs, Facing Right, 1633–35
    Black chalk, heightened with white chalk, on blue paper
    17 3/8 × 10 5/8 (42.2 × 27. 1 cm)
    École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts, Paris

    This recently reattributed drawing is a sketch for the pose of three of the sons of Philip, Earl of Pembroke, in Van Dyck’s largest surviving painting, a portrait of the Herbert family almost seventeen feet wide. Van Dyck made no attempt to indicate anything of the boys’ features and probably did not work from life. He seems to have considered the drawing as a functional step toward the complete portrait, giving us a glimpse of his draftsmanship at its roughest and most energetic. A contemporary source describes such drawings by Van Dyck as "figures & postures all in Suden [sudden] lines, as angles."

  • black chalk drawing of man standing with lace collar, holding cloak over arm

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    Portrait Study of James Stuart, Duke of Lennox and Richmond, Standing, ca. 1633
    Black chalk, heightened with white chalk, on light brown paper
    18 7/8 × 11 in. (47.9 × 28 cm)
    The British Museum, London

    A prominent nobleman under Charles I, James Stuart is seen in this drawing and the related painting wearing the attire and insignia of the Order of the Garter, with which he had been invested in 1633. Although the costume and face are specific enough to suggest that the drawing was made with Stuart himself sitting, it mainly served as a study of his pose and costume. For the head, Van Dyck would probably have made a more detailed oil sketch, possibly on the canvas intended for the finished painting.

  • black chalk sketching of two greyhound dogs sitting, one without head

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    Two Studies of a Greyhound, ca. 1633
    Black chalk, heightened with white chalk, on light brown paper
    18 7/8 × 12 3/4 in. (47.8 × 32.4 cm)
    The British Museum, London

    Van Dyck made these studies of a magnificent greyhound in preparation for a full-length portrait of the courtier James Stuart (The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York). A sketch of his pose and costume in the painting is shown here. The drawing of the dog is more detailed, perhaps because Van Dyck knew he would have less time to capture the pose of the animal in an oil sketch. In fact, during the dog’s "sitting," it shifted the position of its legs, prompting the artist to draw its body twice. For the painting, Van Dyck combined the body at left with the head at right. The dog, which allegedly saved its master’s life during a boar hunt, is also included in another portrait of Stuart by Van Dyck (Iveagh Bequest, Kenwood House, London).

  • black and white chalk sketch of man with curly hair and collar ruffle

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    Portrait Study of a Young Man (Bernard Stuart?), ca. 1638
    Black chalk, heightened with white chalk, on gray-blue paper
    13 1/2 × 8 3/4 in. (34.3 × 22.3 cm)
    The British Museum, London

    This fairly detailed head study stands apart from most of Van Dyck’s English-period portrait drawings, which are generally concerned only with pose and costume. The long-haired youth wearing a luxurious lace collar may be Bernard Stuart, brother of James, Duke of Lennox and Richmond, who is shown in the portrait study here. Van Dyck portrayed Bernard together with another brother, John, in a famous double portrait from around 1638 (The National Gallery, London), and the young nobleman is also possibly the subject of the drawing here.

  • black chalk sketch of half nude male with cloak about him and shoulder length hair

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    Portrait Study of a Young Man in Classical Garb, ca. 1632–41
    Black chalk on buff paper
    15 7/8 × 10 1/8 in. (40.2 × 25.7 cm)
    Fogg Museum, Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge;
    Alpheus Hyatt Purchasing Fund

    Although most of Van Dyck’s portraits show his sitters in contemporary dress, a few present them in the religious or mythological guise of a history painting. This drawing appears to be made in preparation for such a portrait, possibly depicting its subject as St. John the Baptist or a Greek shepherd, although no related painting is known today. A strong resemblance suggests the young man could be the same as the one in the more conventional portrait drawing here. Indeed, a pastoral theme would have particularly appealed to a young aristocrat at the court of Charles I, where noblemen and women often played the roles of shepherds and shepherdesses at masques.

  • black chalk, faint sketch of woman facing left with curls

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    Study of the Head of a Lady Facing Left, ca. 1635–40
    Black chalk on light-brown (formerly blue) paper
    9 13/16 × 8 3/16 in. (25 × 20.8 cm)
    The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Rogers Fund, 1926

    This head study, until recently attributed to Peter Lely, is one of the more detailed portrait drawings of Van Dyck’s English period. The lady’s pointed nose and chin and curly hair are precisely recorded, while her dress is indicated only with the faintest outlines. Despite its small size, the drawing makes the somewhat forbidding appearance of the woman remarkably present.

  • oil painting of woman standing in blue dress holding green scarf

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    Lady Anne Carey, Later Viscountess Claneboye and Countess of Clanbrassil, ca. 1636
    Oil on canvas
    83 1/2 × 50 1/4 in. (212.1 × 127.6 cm)
    The Frick Collection; Henry Clay Frick Bequest

    Anne Carey, later Countess of Clanbrassil, was the daughter of Henry Carey, second Earl of Monmouth, and Martha Cranfield. According to a family history, the Countess of Clanbrassil was a "very handsome and witty" woman who was "extraordinary in knowledge, virtue, and piety." This portrait was likely painted on the occasion of her engagement to James Hamilton, heir of a Scottish family that had received large land grants in Northern Ireland. Lady Anne strides to the left in an Arcadian landscape, with the boulder behind her framing a woodland vista. Van Dyck reused this backdrop in other portraits, catering to the taste of English aristocrats who sought refuge from an increasingly unstable political situation in pastoral fantasies.

  • oil painting of standing woman in white dress, young girl in orange dress and man in black garb

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    James Stanley, Lord Strange, Later Seventh Earl of Derby, with His Wife, Charlotte, and Their Daughter, ca. 1636
    Oil on canvas
    97 × 84 1/8 in. (246.4 × 213.7 cm)
    The Frick Collection; Henry Clay Frick Bequest

    James Stanley, Lord Strange, Earl of Derby, was descended from an ancient land-owning family in the north of England that also ruled the Isle of Man. He married Charlotte de La Trémoille, who was related to some of the most prominent aristocratic defenders of Protestantism in continental Europe. Both played a role in the royalist cause following the outbreak of the civil war, and the earl was eventually beheaded. Here, Lord and Lady Strange form an inverted triangle with one of their daughters, an arrangement of classical simplicity that coexists with an allusive iconographic program. The island in the background may represent the Isle of Man and the color of the young girl’s dress her descent from the House of Orange.

  • oil painting of man standing in blue garb with red cloak, resting book on rock

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    John Suckling, ca. 1638
    Oil on canvas
    85 1/4 × 51 1/4 in. (216.5 × 130.2 cm)
    The Frick Collection; Henry Clay Frick Bequest

    Sir John Suckling was the son of the secretary of state and the nephew of the lord treasurer of England. After an education on the Continent, he gained a reputation as a spendthrift, lothario, and gambler but also as an accomplished poet and playwright. Suckling may have sat for Van Dyck in 1638, the year his tragedy Aglaura was staged. By displaying Shakespeare’s First Folio in his portrait, Suckling took a stance in contemporary debates about the merits of Shakespeare and modern (as opposed to classical) poetry. A similar position is expressed with the line from the Roman satirist Persius inscribed on the boulder to the right of Suckling: NE TE QUÆSIVERIS EXTRA (Do not seek outside yourself).

  • oil painting man standing with long brown hair and mustache, wearing black with white blouse, red belt and large white neck collar

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    Pomponne II de Bellièvre, ca. 1637–40
    Oil on canvas
    54 × 43 1/2 in. (137.2 × 110.5 cm)
    Seattle Art Museum; Purchased with a major grant from an anonymous donor; additional funds provided by Louise Raymond Owens; Norman and Amelia Davis; Oliver T. and Carol Erickson; Seattle Art Museum Guild; Pauline Ederer Bolster and Arthur F. Ederer in memory of their sister, Milli Ederer Kastner; Mr. and Mrs. James D. Burns; gift in memory of Andrew Price by Mrs. Mary Price and their family; bequest of Mr. and Mrs. Archibald Stewart Downey; bequest of Charles Moseley Clark; Max R. Schweitzer; gift of Mr. and Mrs. Douglas Stimson, Thomas D. Stimson Memorial Collection; Eugene Fuller Memorial Collection; Silver Anniversary Fund; Margaret E. Fuller Purchase Fund; Seattle Art Museum Purchase Fund by exchange

    Pomponne II de Bellièvre, Lord of Grignon, came from a prominent family of French statesmen and twice served as French ambassador to the English court. Van Dyck most likely painted Bellièvre during the latter’s first posting to London, although the ambassador could also have sat for him during the painter’s sojourn in Paris shortly before his death. Van Dyck’s likeness is a study in muted elegance, with Bellièvre’s long brown hair lapping over his floppy collar while a sash of crimson silk accents his otherwise black and white costume. Bellièvre was a noted collector of works by Nicolas Poussin and Philippe de Champaigne, and his austere and learned taste may have informed his instructions to Van Dyck for the present portrait.

  • oil painting of man standing in armor, with hand resting on helmet on table and staff in other hand

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    Edmund Verney, ca. 1640
    Oil on canvas
    53 3/8 × 42 5/8 in. (135.5 × 108.2 cm)
    Private collection, on long-term loan to the National Portrait Gallery, London

    Sir Edmund Verney rose to the office of knight marshal and standard-bearer to Charles I before falling at the Battle of Edgehill in the English Civil War. Here, Verney’s head appears against an unfinished backdrop, framed by a halo of paint that marks the border between Van Dyck’s own contribution to the painting and the secondary areas probably meant to be completed by an assistant. These halos, more visible now than they would have been in Van Dyck’s day, are a trademark of portraits from his English period. The composition draws upon Van Dyck’s earlier portraits of military figures, usually accompanied by the attributes of baton and helmet.

  • painting of portrait of woman in blue and white dress with sheer wrap and pearl earring and necklace

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    Portrait of a Woman, ca. 1640
    Oil on canvas
    29 7/8 × 23 1/4 in. (75.9 × 59.1 cm)
    Speed Art Museum, Louisville; Museum Purchase, Preston Pope Satterwhite Fund

    This outstanding portrait offers valuable evidence of Van Dyck’s method during his English period. The treatment of the face is highly finished and refined, but the woman’s bust and hand await finishing glazes, and there are extensive areas of unpainted canvas that suggest a shawl wrapped around her body. As with many other works from his London studio, Van Dyck must have painted his sitter’s face from life, resulting in a halo still visible around her head. A workshop assistant would probably have completed the painting of the background and draperies before Van Dyck applied a few final touches. If the occasional identification of the sitter as Rachel, Countess of Southampton, is correct, then work on the portrait may have been interrupted by the sitter’s death in childbirth.

  • red, black, white drawing of woman's face, while reclining

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    Head Study of a Reclining Woman, Possibly Margaret Lemon, ca. 1638–39 (?)
    Black and red chalk, heightened with white chalk
    7 5/8 × 9 3/4 in. (19.5 × 24.7 cm)
    The Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge

    Flattery seems to have been of no concern to Van Dyck when he made this intimate portrait of a reclining woman. To achieve the detailed depiction of the face, Van Dyck used red in addition to black and white chalks, following the example of Peter Paul Rubens in his portrait drawings of relatives. Like these, Van Dyck’s unique drawing was probably made as an independent work. The inscription below identifies the sitter as his mistress, Margaret Lemon, but a comparison with known portraits of her, including the print after Van Dyck in the exhibition, does not fully confirm this identification.

  • oil painting of three-quarter portrait of young woman wearing silver dress, pearls, red flowers in hair

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    Margaret Lemon, ca. 1638
    Oil on canvas
    23 3/8 × 19 1/2 in. (59.5 × 49.5 cm)
    Private collection, New York

    There is almost no surviving documentation for the life of Van Dyck’s mistress, Margaret Lemon, although some sources describe her as a famous courtesan. In this portrait, long considered lost, Lemon appears in three-quarter profile, delicately touching the fabric at her shoulder. Only recently has this version been recognized as Van Dyck’s original, the source of many imitations. At some point, the canvas was cut down, truncating the gesture of Lemon’s left hand. This area may have been unfinished at Van Dyck’s death.

  • portrait etching of young woman in profile wearing pearls, and dress, in octagon frame, circa 1646

    Jean Morin (ca. 1605–1650), after Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    Margaret Lemon, 1646
    Etching (second state)
    12 5/16 × 10 1/16 in. (31.2 × 25.5 cm)
    The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York;
    Harris Brisbane Dick Fund, 1941

    An almost exact contemporary of Van Dyck’s, the French etcher Jean Morin is among the earliest and best printmakers to have worked after him. Taking full advantage of the subtle gradations and quivering lines allowed by the etching process, Morin based this plate on the portrait of Van Dyck’s mistress. The lack of an inscription identifying the sitter suggests the print was made less as a likeness of a particular woman than as an example of Van Dyck’s mastery of the genre, although the handwritten annotation indicates that her identity was preserved.

  • oil painting of woman in blue and white dress, displaying jeweled cross at her wrist, and wearing leaves as hairpiece

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    Mary, Lady van Dyck, née Ruthven, ca. 1640
    Oil on canvas
    41 × 32 in. (104 × 81 cm)
    Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid

    Mary Ruthven came from an aristocratic, if impoverished, family of Scottish Catholics and served as a maid of honor to Queen Henrietta Maria. Van Dyck’s marriage to her in early 1640 marked his social ascent, but the painter died less than two years later, just eight days after the birth of his daughter Justina. Van Dyck’s portrait of his new bride is a sensuously painted autograph work. A cluster of oak leaves bound in Lady van Dyck’s hair may symbolize constancy, while her elegantly splayed fingers call attention to the proscribed Catholic faith that she shared with her husband, symbolized in the crucifix she displays.

  • black and white chalk drawing of man wearing hat with musette, bag pipe like instrument

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    François Langlois, Playing a Musette, 1641 (?)
    Black chalk, heightened with white chalk, on buff paper
    15 1/2 × 11 1/8 in. (39.3 × 28.3 cm)
    Frits Lugt Collection, Fondation Custodia, Paris

    Van Dyck’s preparatory drawing of Langlois closely accords with the painting. Nonetheless, it conveys an entirely different emotional tenor, with the painted version replacing his melancholy expression with a smile. Few drawings by Van Dyck better exemplify the bold, spare manner of his late graphic style.

  • oil painting portrait of man in red with hat holding a musette, bag-pipe instrument, circa 1641

    Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641)
    François Langlois, Playing a Musette, 1641 (?)
    Oil on canvas
    41 1/4 × 33 1/8 in. (104.8 × 84.1 cm)
    The National Gallery, London, and Barber Institute of Fine Arts, Birmingham

    With its vivid color scheme and fluid brushwork, this portrait has long been seen as an exception within the work of Van Dyck’s last period. The print publisher and art dealer François Langlois, a key figure in the world of European publishing, is most likely depicted here at the very end of Van Dyck’s life, when the two men were both in Paris. Van Dyck’s unusual composition, which may reflect a friendship between sitter and painter, shows Langlois playing a musette, a kind of bagpipe on which he is reputed to have been a virtuoso.