portrait of a noblewoman possibly mary queen of scots manner of francois clouet

Portrait of a Noblewoman, Possibly Mary, Queen of Scots; Manner of Francois Clouet.



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Oil on oak panel, 17th/early 18th century in a period frame.
This exquisite small portrait, painted with a miniaturist's skill, has a very intimate quality; the sitter's eyes meet the viewer's in a direct and confidential way.
Painted in the 17th or early 18th century this portrait is in the manner of Clouet in the 1560s. There are several portraits of Mary, Queen of Scots by him which are very similar both in technique and the appearance of the sitter. It is likely that the portrait was painted in the 17th century when the Stuarts, Mary's descendants, were on the throne and Mary's image was revamped from traitor to martyr. Mary had been called an adulteress and traitor by the English and was beheaded for plotting to assassinate her cousin Elizabeth I, but under the Stuarts she was presented as a beautiful and religious princess unjustly executed for her Catholic faith.
Of course, it may also be that the sitter was a noblewoman who looked like Mary. There are so many images claimed to be of her and so many artists depicted her in their own way...half the portraits seem to bear no resemblance to each other, especially the 18th and 19th century ones.
However, regardless of the identity of the sitter this remains a beautiful and highly skilled portrait of a very attractive young woman of very rank.
FRANCOIS CLOUET (c. 1510 22 December 1572), son of Jean Clouet, was a French Renaissance miniaturist and painter, particularly known for his detailed portraits of the French ruling family. His work is remarkable for the elaborate finish of all the details, the extreme accuracy of the drawing, and the exquisite completeness of the whole portrait.
SIZE: 16 x 13.5 inches including the frame.
Panel size: 10.5 x 8.25 inches.
PROVENANCE: Collection of Mevrouw Vredenberg, Holland. Restored and sold by Kunsthandel Oenema.
French Private Collection.
Verso; old labels for restorer and dealer, plus a handwritten label attributing the portrait to Manner of Holbein.
Internal Ref: 9080


Height = 40 cm (16")
Width = 34 cm (14")
Depth = 3 cm (1")

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