Antoon (Antony) van Dyck (1599 - 1641): Self Portrait With

Antoon (Antony) van Dyck (1599 - 1641): Self Portrait With

7/10/2021, 12:38:53 PM
Antoon (Antony) van Dyck (1599 - 1641): Self Portrait With a Sunflower, after 1633, oil on canvas, 58.4 × 73 cm (22.99 × 28.74 in), Private collection of the Duke of Westminster Antony van Dyck was a Flemish Baroque artist who became the leading court painter in England, after enjoying great success in Italy and Flanders. He is most famous for his portraits of Charles I of England and his family and court, painted with a relaxed elegance that was to be the dominant influence on English portrait-painting for the next 150 years. He also painted biblical and mythological subjects, displayed outstanding facility as a draughtsman, and was an important innovator in watercolour and etching. 'Self-portrait with a sunflower' was produced at the height of his fame, while Anthony Van Dyck was the principal painter at the court of Charles I, who also knighted him. He wears the gold chain given to him by his patron and holds a large sunflower, whose symbolism is much debated. In the painting, the artist turns to gaze out at the viewer. With one hand he points to himself while holding up for display the gold chain recently presented to him by Charles I; with the other he gestures toward a large sunflower that seems to mirror the artist’s pose. Both the man and plant appear animated, as his tousled hair and the flower’s thick petals appear to respond to the shifting light and billowing atmosphere surrounding them. The picture’s intertwined themes have long been recognized: Van Dyck represents himself as the ideal courtier, whose devotion to his monarch is likened to the flower’s natural inclination to follow the path of the sun, while he also promotes a claim for the nobility of pictorial art.

Related posts