11 Paintings, PORTRAIT OF A LADY, with Footnotes. # 14

Vigée Le Brun, (1779-1857)

Countess Kagenek as Flora, c. 1793

oil on canvas, within a painted oval,

29-5/8″ x 24-5/8″, 75.3 x 62.6 cm 

Private Museum

Toulouse Foundation Georges Bemberg, France On display at l’hotel d’Assézat. Anna Flora von Kaganeck, later Grafin Wrbna (1779-1857).

Countess Kagenek was the daughter of Count Frederich Kagenek and Countess Maria Theresa Salm Reiffersheidt and the cousin and close friend of Prince Clemens von Metternich (1773-1859). 

Even though she married Count Eugene Wrbna in 1798 the couple lived in the Metternich residence where the Countess assumed the role of hostess to foreign dignitaries during the Congress of Vienna (September 1814- June 1815). 

As a young bride, she was the toast of society and possessed great beauty and grace. Even in this youthful portrait one can easily see these traits.

Vigée Le Brun wrote, “… I found lodgings within the city of Vienna … and immediately set about painting the portrait of the Ambassador of Spain’s daughter, Mlle Kaguenek, a very pretty sixteen year old…” 

The portrait is Signed and dated lower left L.E. Vigée LeBrun/ á Vienne 1792 and inscribed on the reverse of the canvas Flore. Comtesse de Kagenek/ agée de 13 ans/ née le 23 septembre 1779

Offered for sale by Sotheby’s New York on 23 Jan 2003. $500K to $700K. Sold to collector, Mr. Georges Bemberg and placed it in his private museum in France. More Countess Kagenek

Louise Élisabeth Vigée Le Brun (Marie Élisabeth Louise; 16 April 1755 – 30 March 1842), also known as Madame Lebrun, was a prominent French painter.

Her artistic style is generally considered part of the aftermath of Rococo, while she often adopts a neoclassical style. Vigée Le Brun cannot be considered a pure Neoclassicist, however, in that she creates mostly portraits in Neoclassical dress rather than the History painting. While serving as the portrait painter to Marie Antoinette, Vigée Le Brun works purely in Rococo in both her color and style choices.

Vigée Le Brun left a legacy of 660 portraits and 200 landscapes. In addition to private collections, her works may be found at major museums, such as the Hermitage Museum, London’s National Gallery, and museums in continental Europe and the United States. More

Henry Nelson O’Neil, (1817–1880)

Eastern Lady, c. 1849

Oil on canvas

36.4 x 31 cm

Aberdeen Art Gallery & Museums

Henry Nelson O’Neil ARA (1817 in Russia – 1880) was an historical genre painter and minor Victorian writer. He worked primarily with historical and literary subjects. He also had popular successes with romantic scenes portraying the deaths of Mozart and Raphael.

O’Neil was a member of The Clique, a group of artists in the 1840s who, like the later Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, met regularly to discuss and criticize one another’s works. 

O’Neil came to England with his family in 1823. He became a student at the Royal Academy Schools in 1836, and sent his first picture to the Royal Academy exhibition in 1838. He  began to pursue modern­life subjects that had a strong emotional component. His choice of subjects was considered to be striking, but his composition faulty. Although made an A.R.A. in 1860, O’Neil was never elected an R.A., despite exhibiting nearly one hundred works at the Royal Academy. More Henry Nelson O’Neil

Antoine-Jean Gros (1771–1835)

Portrait of Madame Fravega, c. 1795

Oil on canvas

128 × 126 cm (50.4 × 49.6 in)

Musée des Beaux-Arts de Marseille

The identity of the model has been speculated. Perhaps a portrait of Celeste Coltellini Meuricoffre.

Celeste Coltellini (26 November 1760 – 24 July 1828 ) was an Italian soprano. She was a well-known singer of opera buffa in Europe in the late 18th century. Born in Livornoi. In 1780, she made her debut at Teatro alla Scala in Milan, performing in three operas. She then sang at Teatro San Carlo in Naples, where she had the opportunity to meet Emperor Joseph II, who later invited her to perform in Vienna.

When her voice changed to soprano, she accepted the Emperor’s invitation. In 1785, she went to Vienna with her mother, and stayed there for a year. She returned to Vienna again in 1788, but stayed just for a few month. She was seen with Mozart several times at music performances and parties, however, there was no record or any official report mentioning about any affairs or collaboration works between them.

Coltellini was famous for her excellent interpretation of the title role Nina, o sia La pazza per amore by Giovanni Paisiello. Her sister, Annetta also a singer, often accompanied her in the production.

In 1792, at the age of 32, Celeste retired from the opera stage and married the Swiss banker Jean-Georges Meuricoffre who owned a bank in Naples. Coltellini died in Naples in 1828. More Celeste Coltellini Meuricoffre.

Antoine-Jean Gros, (1771–1835)

Madame Pasteur, between 1795 and 1796

Oil on canvas

Height: 86 cm (33.9 in). Width: 67 cm (26.4 in).

Louvre Museum

Refugee in Italy during the Revolution, Gros painted several portraits, mainly in Genoa in 1795-96. 

Antoine-Jean Baron Gros (born March 16, 1771, Paris, France—died June 26, 1835, Paris), was a French Romantic painter principally remembered for his historical pictures depicting significant events in the military career of Napoleon.

Gros received his first art training from his father, who was a painter of miniatures. In 1785 he entered the studio of his father’s friend Jacques-Louis David, whom he revered but whose cerebral Neoclassical style was uncongenial to Gros’s romantically passionate nature. As a student, he was more influenced by the energetic brushwork and colour of Peter Paul Rubens and the Venetians than the hard linearism of his contemporary Neoclassicists.

In 1793 Gros went to Italy, where he met Joséphine de Beauharnais and, through her, Napoleon. In 1796 he followed the French army to Arcole and was present when Napoleon planted the French flag on the bridge. This incident he immortalized in his first major work. Napoleon bestowed on him the rank of inspecteur aux revues. He accompanied Napoleon on his campaigns and also helped select works of art from Italy for the Louvre.

After the fall of Napoleon and the restoration of the Bourbons (who gave Gros the title of baron); as the heir of Neoclassicism. He continued to paint large compositions—e.g., the ceiling of the Egyptian room of the Louvre. His best works after 1815 were portraits, some of which approached the quality of his Napoleonic pictures. He became increasingly dissatisfied with his accomplishments, and he committed suicide. More Antoine-Jean Baron Gros

In Ottoman Turkey of the 16th and 17th centuries, when religious and cultural mores kept most females secluded behind harem walls, five generations of women fulfilled their quest for influence. Each entered the Ottoman world as a slave, where the love of a powerful man meant access to power. They dominated the lives of their husbands and sons so that each became the power behind the throne, and influenced policy through their men. This period became known as the Reign of Women (Turkish: Kadinlar Saltanati). More Reign of Women

Titian (1490–1576) 

La Sultana Rossa, c. circa 1550

Oil on canvas

Current location

Ringling Museum of Art, Sarasota

Hürrem Sultan; Ottoman Turkish, c. 1502 – 15 April 1558, also known as Roxelana was the favourite and later the chief consort and legal wife of Ottoman Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent, the Lawgiver.  She was one of the most powerful and influential women in Ottoman history and a prominent and controversial figure during the era known as the Sultanate of Women. When her husband, Suleiman I, reigned as the Ottoman sultan, she achieved power and influenced the politics of the Ottoman Empire through her husband and played an active role in state affairs of the Empire.

Hürrem was a native of Poland. She was born in the town of Rohatyn, in the Crown of the Kingdom of Poland (today in Western Ukraine). In the 1520s Crimean Tatars captured her during one of their frequent raids into this region, took her as a slave and selected her for Suleiman’s harem. More Hürrem Sultan


Suleiman’s wife, Roxelana (1500-1558), circa 18 century

Oil on canvas

Topkapi Palace Museum

Tiziano Vecelli or Tiziano Vecellio, or Titian (1488/1490 – 27 August 1576), was an Italian painter, the most important member of the 16th-century Venetian school. He was born in Pieve di Cadore, near Belluno (in Veneto, Republic of Venice). During his lifetime he was often called da Cadore, taken from the place of his birth.

Recognized by his contemporaries as “The Sun Amidst Small Stars”, Titian was one of the most versatile of Italian painters, equally adept with portraits, landscape backgrounds, and mythological and religious subjects. His painting methods, particularly in the application and use of color, would exercise a profound influence not only on painters of the Italian Renaissance, but on future generations of Western art.

During the course of his long life, Titian’s artistic manner changed drastically but he retained a lifelong interest in color. Although his mature works may not contain the vivid, luminous tints of his early pieces, their loose brushwork and subtlety of tone are without precedent in the history of Western painting. More Titian


Safiye Sultan

Safiye Sultan, (1550 – 1619), the favourite consort of the Ottoman sultan Murad III (reigned 1574–95) and the mother of his son Mehmed III (reigned 1595–1603); she exercised a strong influence on Ottoman affairs during the reigns of both sultans.

Safiye, whose name means “pure one,” is said to have been a native of Rezi, a mountain town in Albania. Until the death in 1583 of Nur Banu, the valide sultan (mother of the sultan on the throne), Safiye’s influence was limited. Thereafter, as haseki sultan (mother of the heir to the throne) and after 1595 as valide sultan, she wielded great influence at the Ottoman court. Among those who enjoyed her favour was the thrice grand vizier (chief minister) İbrahim Paşa. During the years of her greatest influence, she is said to have been partial to the interests of Venice. She was sent into retirement after the death of Mehmed III.

A mosque at Cairo, the Malikah Ṣafiyyah, bears her name. Another mosque, in Istanbul, the Yeni Valide Cami, was begun on her orders and completed under Sultan Mehmed IV (reigned 1648–87). More Safiye Sultan

Frank Duveneck, 1848 – 1919

Seated Nude, 1879

 Oil on artist board

32 1/2 x 24 1/2 in.

Private collection

Frank Duveneck, (born October 9, 1848, Covington, Kentucky, U.S.—died January 3, 1919, Cincinnati, Ohio), American painter, sculptor, and art teacher who helped awaken American interest in European naturalism. At age 21 Duveneck studied in Germany with Wilhelm Dietz at the Munich Academy and was greatly influenced by the works of Frans Hals, Rembrandt, and Peter Paul Rubens. His success was immediate, and in 1871 he won a medal from the Bavarian Royal Academy. Fellow artists and critics responded to his bold, vital brushstrokes and strong contrasts of light and dark. Two years later, he arranged his first solo exhibition in Munich, further establishing his international reputation.

After returning to the United States in 1873 and settling in Cincinnati, Ohio, Duveneck burst upon the American scene with an exhibition in Boston in 1875. His work was characterized by dark, earthy colours and broad, painterly brushwork clearly reminiscent of the European masters Duveneck admired. Both the writer Henry James and the artist William Morris Hunt championed Duveneck’s art. Although emboldened by this response, Duveneck returned to Munich and sent works to exhibitions in the United States. More Frank Duveneck

Frank Duveneck, (1848–1919)

Portrait of Marie Danforth Page, circa 1889

Oil on canvas

Cincinnati Art Museum

Marie Danforth Page (1869–1940) was an American painter, mainly of portraits. A native of Boston, Page began drawing lessons at 17. These continued until 1889, when she began five years of lessons at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. In 1903 she traveled to Europe, where she copied paintings of Diego Velazquez while in Spain; on her return she took lessons at Harvard University in color theory. In 1896 she married and settled in Boston.

Page soon began to receive commissions. Three of her paintings were accepted for the Panama-Pacific Exhibition of 1915 in San Francisco, and one won a bronze medal. Further prizes followed, at the National Academy of Design – to which she was elected as an associate in 1927 – and the Newport Art Association, and her first one-woman show came in 1921 at the Guild of Boston Artists. She continued to win prizes, including an honorary MA from Tufts University, and show work until her death.

Page’s papers are currently held by the Archives of American Art. One of her portraits, a c. 1911 painting of a boy titled Portrait of Henry, was included in the inaugural exhibition of the National Museum of Women in the Arts, American Women Artists 1830–1930, in 1987. More Marie Danforth Page

Attributed to Jean Raoux, (1677–1734)

Girl with a Pearl Necklace.

Oil on canvas

Museum of Fine Arts in Marseille

Jean Raoux (1677 – 10 February 1734), French painter, was born at Montpellier. After the usual course of training he became a member of the Academy in 1717 as an historical painter. His reputation had been previously established by the credit of decorations executed during his three years in Italy on the palace of Giustiniani Solini at Venice, and by some easel paintings. To this latter class of subject Raoux devoted himself, nor did he even paint portraits except in character. The list of his works is a long series of sets of the Seasons, of the Hours, of the Elements, or of those scenes of amusement and gallantry in the representation of which he was immeasurably surpassed by his younger rival Watteau. After his stay in England (1720) he lived much in the Temple, where he decorated several rooms. He died in Paris in 1734. More Jean Raoux

Egon Schiele, (1890–1918)

Seated girl with bare torso and light blue skirt, c. 1917

Watercolor, paper


Gemeentemuseum den Haag, Hague, Netherlands

Egon Schiele (German: 12 June 1890 – 31 October 1918) was an Austrian painter. A protégé of Gustav Klimt, Schiele was a major figurative painter of the early 20th century. His work is noted for its intensity and its raw sexuality, and the many self-portraits the artist produced, including naked self-portraits. The twisted body shapes and the expressive line that characterize Schiele’s paintings and drawings mark the artist as an early exponent of Expressionism. More

Images are copyright of their respective owners, assignees or others


Author: zaidangallery

I search Art History for Beautiful works that may, or may not, have a secondary or unexpected story to tell. I then write short summaries that grow from my research. Art work is so much more when its secrets are exposed

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s