Home Concept Art Hans Memling double portrait – Strains and Colours

Hans Memling double portrait – Strains and Colours


Portraits of Folco Portinari and Maria Portinari (Maria Maddalena Baroncelli), oil painting on wood, Hans Memling

Tommaso di Folco Portinari; Maria Portinari (Maria Maddalena Baroncelli), Hans Memling, oil on wooden, roughly 17 x 13″ (42 x 32 cm), respectively.

These exceptional portraits by the famous fifteenth century Flemish painter are beautiful examples of Northern Renaissance oil portray.

The Met’s web page for the work signifies they have been initially a part of a triptych, each dealing with an inside panel of the Virgin and Baby.

Take a look at the excellent rendition of the couple’s eyes, the refined modeling of the faces, the fragile variation of shade within the pores and skin, in addition to the intricate consideration paid to the girl’s jewellery, each of their rings, and the girl’s fingernails.

As if that wasn’t sufficient to wow the viewer, Memling has added a little bit of trompe l’oeil trickery with a fake inside body, overlapped subtly by the person’s cloak and the shadow of the girl’s praying palms, and extra overtly by the veil of her headdress.

[Addendum: Reader Richard Budig (see this post’s comments) points out a fascinating detail I missed entirely. There is a pentimento of a line of beaded jewelry showing through the paint surface on the woman’s neck, just above the other jewelry.]




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