11 Paintings, PORTRAIT OF A LADY, with Footnotes. # 16

Corneille de La Haye dit de Lyon and his workshop

LA HAYE 1500/1510 – 1575 LYON


Oil on panel 

17 x 14 cm; 6 3/4 by 5 1/2 in

Private Collection

Anne de Pisseleu d’Heilly, the duchesse d’Etampes. Anne was born in 1508 (making her fourteen years younger than the king) and began her career at court as maid of honor to François’s mother, Louise de Savoie. When François returned to France in 1526 from his imprisonment in Spain, he discovered the lovely–and ambitious–Anne and took her as his lover. She became his official mistress and for the next twenty years, until his death in 1547, she wielded significant influence in political and artistic circles at the French court. More Anne de Pisseleu d’Heilly, the duchesse d’Etampes.

Corneille de Lyon or Corneille de la Haye (born between 1500 and 1510 in The Hague and died in 1575 in Lyon ) was a royal painter of Franco – Dutch portraits.

Although he was known at the time as Corneille de la Haye, he knew nothing of his Dutch youth and arrived in Lyons at the latest in 1533 . Painting the portraits of several members of the royal family, he was given the title of royal painter in 1541. Despite this work, he remained in the Rhone town throughout his life. By marrying the daughter of a renowned printer, he became part of the notability of the city, and acquired a solid social position, living in the printers’ quarter near Notre-Dame-de-Confort .

He lived by his work as a painter, and cooperated with other artists in the neighborhood. His studio preserves a gallery of copies of the paintings of the most famous personages he has painted. This allows customers to acquire a new copy, or encourages them to have the portrait painted by a renowned painter. His affairs seem to be prosperous until the wars of religion , during which, despite his attachment to the Reformed religion , he did not appear to be the victim of aggression. He converted to the catholic religion in 1569.

The art of Corneille, of small portrait without decoration, was innovative for the time, and gave him great prestige, to the point that the paintings of this style end up being designated as “Corneilles”. Working in oil on wood, he focused his work on the face and the bust. Corneille was very precise in the composition of hair and beards. His models rarely wear heavy decorated clothes, his style remained very sober. The background of his paintings is always without decoration and he seems to work without preparatory drawing. More Corneille de Lyon or Corneille de la Haye

Studio of Sir Peter Lely, SOEST 1618 – 1680 LONDON


Oil on canvas

49 by 39 3/4 in.; 124.5 by 101 cm.

Private Collection

The question of likeness with Lely is always a difficult subject as even his contemporaries commented on the fact that many of his sitters looked similar – ‘Mr Walker, ye Painter swore Lilly’s Pictures, was all Brothers and Sister’. This sitter bears strong affinities to those in other works which have traditionally been called Nell Gwyn, the longtime mistress of Charles II and among Lely’s most famous subjects, with whom many portraits by Lely and his studio have been associated, both correctly and incorrectly. More question of likeness

Lady Essex (Rich) Finch, later Countess of Nottingham, British, 1652 – 1684 was born around 1652, the youngest of three daughters of Robert Rich, 3rd Earl of Warwick, and his second wife, Anne Cheeke Rogers. Her mother died within a few years of her birth, and her father made a death-bed request that she and her sisters be raised by Mary Rich, wife of his brother and heir, Charles Rich, 4th Earl of Warwick. 

Essex and her sisters were raised in a troubled domestic atmosphere, marred by the violent rages of their uncle, who suffered painfully from gout, and the morose, penitential brooding of their aunt, a religious convert who punished herself severely for the frivolous youth she spent among the Killigrew family. 

Co-heirs to their father’s fortune, Lady Essex and her sisters inherited additional lands and money on their uncle’s death in 1673. Vast wealth made them attractive marriage prospects. When a match was proposed with Daniel Finch, eldest son of Sir Heneage Finch,, Lord Keeper of the Great Seal and later 1st Earl of Nottingham. Finch was a man of stellar character and won Lady Warwick’s approbation. Several months later, Essex gave her consent and they were married on June 16, 1674, at Leighs Priory, near Felsted, Essex. The couple resided with the groom’s parents in Kensington (now Kensington Palace). Tender letters from her husband and father-in-law reveal that Lady Essex (who suffered from delicate health) was the object of affectionate concern. Her husband served as Secretary of the Navy from 1679 to 1684, and by his father’s death on December 18, 1782, he became 2nd Earl of Nottingham. The Countess gave birth to eight children, and adopted the unusual practice of nursing them herself. All but one died in infancy. Essex, Countess of Nottingham, died from complications of childbirth on March 23, 1684, and was buried in the Finch family vault at Ravenstone, Buckinghamshire. Nine months later her husband married eighteen-year-old Anne Hatton (1667-1743), third daughter of Christopher, 1st Viscount Hatton of Gretton. A notable poet, she bore approximately thirty children in forty-four years of marriage. More Lady Essex

Sir Peter Lely (14 September 1618 – 30 November 1680) was a painter of Dutch origin, whose career was nearly all spent in England, where he became the dominant portrait painter to the court.

Lely was born Pieter van der Faes to Dutch parents, his father was an officer serving in the armed forces of the Elector of Brandenburg. Lely studied painting in Haarlem He became a master of the Guild of Saint Luke in Haarlem in 1637. He is reputed to have adopted the surname “Lely” (also occasionally spelled Lilly) from a heraldic lily on the gable of the house where his father was born in The Hague.

He arrived in London in around 1641. His early English paintings, mainly mythological or religious scenes, or portraits set in a pastoral landscape. Lely’s portraits were well received, and he succeeded Anthony van Dyck as the most fashionable portrait artist in England. He became a freeman of the Painter-Stainers’ Company in 1647 and was portrait artist to Charles I. His talent ensured that his career was not interrupted by Charles’s execution, and he served Oliver Cromwell, and Richard Cromwell. 

Peter Lely (1618–1680)

Unknown Woman, (Margaret Hughes ?) circa 1670-75

Oil on canvas

Tate Britain

While the identity of the sitter is uncertain, her bared breast suggests that she is some powerful man’s mistress rather than a lady of impeccable virtue. Her left hand rests on a golden object, perhaps the jar that symbolises the reformed biblical sinner Mary Magdalene. Her other hand quietens an attentive spaniel, a breed often identified with the Stuart royal family.The inscription on the ledge, ‘Dutchess of Cleveland’, was probably added a century later. More on the Unknown Woman

Margaret Hughes (c. 1630 – 1 October 1719), also Peg Hughes or Margaret Hewes, is often credited as the first professional actress on the English stage. Hughes was also famous as the mistress of the English Civil War general and later Restoration admiral, Prince Rupert of the Rhine. More Margaret Hughes

After the English Restoration in 1660, Lely was appointed as Charles II’s Principal Painter in Ordinary in 1661, with a stipend of £200 per year, as Van Dyck had enjoyed in the previous Stuart reign. Lely became a naturalised English subject in 1662.

Demand was high, and Lely and his large workshop were prolific. After Lely painted a sitter’s head, Lely’s pupils would often complete the portrait in one of a series of numbered poses. As a result, Lely is the first English painter who has left “an enormous mass of work”, although the quality of studio pieces is variable.  More Sir Peter Lely

MASTER of the Story of Griselda

Artemisia I of Caria, c. 1492

Oil on panel, 88 x 46 cm

Museo Poldi Pezzoli, Milan

This painting, attributed to an anonymous Sienese master referred to as the Master of the Story of Griselda, was probably commissioned on the occasion of a wedding. The figures of this artist are characterized by an elongated body and almost dancing movement. The artist was influenced by Luca Signorelli who worked in Siena in this period. More

The Roman writer Aulus Gellius, narrates that in 351 B. C. the widowed Artemisia removed the ashes of her brother and husband, Mausolus, from his tomb, the Mausoleum at Halicarnassus in Asia Minor (visible behind), mixed the ashes into a potion, and drank it.

Artemisia I of Caria was a Greek queen of the ancient Greek city-state of Halicarnassus and of the nearby island of Kos, within the Achaemenid satrapy of Caria, in about 480 BCE. She fought as an ally of Xerxes I, King of Persia against the independent Greek city states during the second Persian invasion of Greece. She personally commanded her contribution of five ships at the naval battle of Artemisium and in the naval Battle of Salamis in 480 BCE. She is mostly known through the writings of Herodotus, himself a native of Halicarnassus, who praises her courage and the respect in which Xerxes held her. 

The ships she brought had the second best reputation in the whole fleet, next to the ones from Sidon.

During the battle, when Artemisia saw that she was near to falling into the hands of the Greeks, she ordered the Persian colours to be taken down, and the master of the ship to bear down upon and attack a Persian vessel of the Calyndian allies, which was commanded by Damasithymus, that was passing by her.

When the captain of the Athenian ship saw her charge against a Persian ship, he turned his ship away and went after others, supposing that the ship of Artemisia was either a Greek ship or was deserting from the Persians and fighting for the Greeks.

According to Polyaenus, when Xerxes saw her sink the ship, he said: “O Zeus, surely you have formed women out of man’s materials, and men out of woman’s.” More Artemisia I of Caria

Paul Raphael Meltsner, 1905 – 1967


Oil on canvas

38 by 33 inches, (96.5 by 83.8 cm)

Private Collection

Gertrude Lawrence, original name Gertrud Alexandra Dagma Lawrence Klasen (born July 4, 1898, London, Eng.—died Sept. 6, 1952, New York, N.Y., U.S.), English actress noted for her performances in Noël Coward’s sophisticated comedies and in musicals.

Lawrence was the daughter of music hall performers, and from an early age she was trained to follow their career. She made her stage debut in December 1908 in a pantomime Dick Whittington in Brixton. Subsequently she appeared in Babes in the Wood (1910) and other musicals and plays, and for a time she toured in minor revues. In 1916 she began appearing in André Charlot’s intimate revues in London, and two years later she stepped into the lead when Beatrice Lillie fell ill. She appeared with Coward, whom she had known for 10 years, in his London Calling (1923) and in January 1924 made her New York debut as one of the stars of Charlot’s Revue. Lawrence’s greatest role was in Coward’s Private Lives, written with her in mind. Both the play and the stars set the tone that would characterize comedies of manners for a decade or more. Perhaps Lawrence’s greatest triumph was as Liza Elliot in the Moss Hart–Kurt Weill musical Lady in the Dark (1941). Coward called her “star quality.” On the strength of it she remained for a quarter-century one of the most popular stars on the American and British stages. In March 1951 she opened on Broadway in Rodgers and Hammerstein’s The King and I, during the run of which she died. More Gertrude Lawrence

Paul Raphael Meltsner (1905–1966) was an American artist who was widely recognized for his Works Progress Administration (WPA) era paintings and lithographs, and who was later known for his iconic portraits of celebrities in the performing arts.

Paul Meltsner sold his first painting when he was eight years old to the government of Palestine for $25. He was born in New York City and attended public schools in Harlem before graduating Flushing High School in 1922. Meltsner later studied at the National Academy of Design and did illustration work for Coronet and Bachelor magazines. 

Later in his career, Meltsner turned his artistic interests to portraits of celebrities in the performing arts. His portrait of Carmen Miranda, complete with a banana hat, helped to popularize Miranda’s image and was acquired by the Brazilian Government for the National Museum of Brazil in Rio de Janeiro. Meltsner would become widely recognized for his depictions of performers in the dramatic arts. One of Meltsner’s Graham portraits is housed in the National Portrait Gallery at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., another in the Wichita Art Museum in Wichita, Kansas, and another hangs in the National Museum of Argentina in Buenos Aires. More Paul Raphael Meltsner 

Norman Rockwell, 1894 – 1978


Oil on canvas

29 by 27 inches, (73.7 by 68.6 cm)

Private Collection

Patricia Mernone, was one of the great women American sports car drivers of the 1960s. Academically trained as an organic micro-analytical chemist, she became interested in racing in in 1961, when her father took-up the sport.  By 1968, she had competed in at least 28 major races in the United States and placed first or second in at least 12 of them.  Described as slim, petite and feminine, Mernone was an aggressive force to be reckoned with on the track. More Patricia Mernone

Norman Rockwell, 1894 – 1978


Pencil and charcoal on paper

28 3/4 by 27 inches, (73 by 68.6 cm)

Private Collection

Pat Mernone. Pete’s bio notes that Pat was daughter of Ed Mernone who was one of the pioneers in the development of Summit Point Raceway.

Norman Perceval Rockwell (February 3, 1894 – November 8, 1978) was a 20th-century American author, painter and illustrator. His works enjoy a broad popular appeal in the United States for their reflection of American culture. Rockwell is most famous for the cover illustrations of everyday life he created for The Saturday Evening Post magazine over nearly five decades. He also is noted for his 64-year relationship with the Boy Scouts of America, during which he produced covers for their publication Boys’ Life, calendars, and other illustrations. More Norman Perceval Rockwell

Edmund Blampied, (British, 1886-1966)

Isabella, c. 1955

Oil on board

19 x 28cm (7 1/2 x 11in).

Private Collection

Edmund Blampied (30 March 1886 – 26 August 1966) was born on a farm in the Parish of Saint Martin, Jersey in the Channel Islands on 30 March 1886. He was was one of the most eminent artists to come from the Channel Islands, yet he received no formal training in art until he was 16 years old. He was noted mostly for his etchings and drypoints published at the height of the print boom in the 1920s during the etching revival, but was also a lithographer, caricaturist, cartoonist, book illustrator and artist in oils, watercolours, silhouettes and bronze. More Edmund Blampied

Raphael (1483–1520)

Portrait of Maddalena Doni Born Strozzi, c. 1506

Oil on panel

63 × 45 cm (24.8 × 17.7 in)

Pitti Palace,  Florence, Italy

Agnolo Doni married Maddalena Strozzi in 1503, but Raphael’s portraits were probably executed in 1506, the period in which the painter studied the art of Leonardo da Vinci most closely. The composition of the portraits resembles that of the Mona Lisa: the figures are presented in the same way in respect to the picture plane, and their hands, like those of the Mona Lisa, are placed on top of one another. But the low horizon of the landscape background permits a careful assessment of the human figure by providing a uniform light which defines surfaces and volumes. This relationship between landscape and figure presents a clear contrast to the striking settings of Leonardo, which communicate the threatening presence of nature.

But the most notable characteristic that distinguishes these portraits from those of Leonardo is the overall sense of serenity which even the close attention to the materials of clothes and jewels (which draw one’s attention to the couple’s wealth) is unable to attenuate. Every element – even those of secondary importance – works together to create a precise balance.

These works, linked not only by the kinship of the subjects, but also by their evident stylistic homogeneity, mark the beginning of Raphael’s artistic maturity. More The Portrait of Maddalena Doni

Raffaello Sanzio da Urbino (April 6 or March 28, 1483 – April 6, 1520), known as Raphael, was an Italian painter and architect of the High Renaissance. His work is admired for its clarity of form, ease of composition, and visual achievement of the Neoplatonic ideal of human grandeur. Together with Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci, he forms the traditional trinity of great masters of that period.

Raphael was enormously productive, running an unusually large workshop and, despite his death at 37, leaving a large body of work. Many of his works are found in the Vatican Palace. The best known work is The School of Athens in the Vatican Stanza della Segnatura. After his early years in Rome much of his work was executed by his workshop from his drawings, with considerable loss of quality. He was extremely influential in his lifetime, though outside Rome his work was mostly known from his collaborative printmaking. More Raffaello

John William Waterhouse, (1849–1917)

Gather Ye Rosebuds While Ye May, c. 1908

Oil on canvas

61.6 × 45.7 cm (24.3 × 18 in)

Private collection

Gather Ye Rosebuds While Ye May is an oil painting on canvas created in 1908 by British Pre-Raphaelite artist, John William Waterhouse. It was the first of two paintings inspired by the 17th century poem “To the Virgins, to Make Much of Time” by Robert Herrick which begins:

Gather ye rosebuds while ye may,

Old Time is still a-flying;

And this same flower that smiles today

Tomorrow will be dying.

John William Waterhouse (April 6, 1849 – February 10, 1917) was an English painter known for working in the Pre-Raphaelite style. He worked several decades after the breakup of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, which had seen its heyday in the mid-nineteenth century, leading to his sobriquet “the modern Pre-Raphaelite”. Borrowing stylistic influences not only from the earlier Pre-Raphaelites but also from his contemporaries, the Impressionists, his artworks were known for their depictions of women from both ancient Greek mythology and Arthurian legend.

Born in Italy to English parents who were both painters, he later moved to London, where he enrolled in the Royal Academy of Art. He soon began exhibiting at their annual summer exhibitions, focusing on the creation of large canvas works depicting scenes from the daily life and mythology of ancient Greece. Later on in his career he came to embrace the Pre-Raphaelite style of painting despite the fact that it had gone out of fashion in the British art scene several decades before. More

B. Prabha, 1933 – 2001


Oil on canvas 

28 x 24 in. (71 x 61 cm.)

Private Collection

B. Prabha (1933–2001) was a major Indian artist who worked mainly in oil, in an instantly recognizable style. She is best known for graceful elongated figures of pensive rural women, with each canvas in a single dominant color. By the time of her death, her work had been shown in over 50 exhibitions, and is in some important collections, including India’s National Gallery of Modern Art.

 She was moved by the lives of rural women, and over time, they became the main theme of her work. In an interview with “Youngbuzz India,” she said:

Prabha came to Bombay as a struggling artist, with little money. Her first exhibition, while she was still a student, set her on the path to success. More B. Prabha

Acknowledgement: Sotheby’s,  and others

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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

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