National Gallery of Art - THE COLLECTION
image of Portrait of a Man Hans Leonard Schäufelein (painter)
German, c. 1480/1485 - 1538/1540
Portrait of a Man, c. 1507
oil on panel
overall: 39.8 x 32.3 cm (15 11/16 x 12 11/16 in.) framed: 54 x 47 x 4.4 cm (21 1/4 x 18 1/2 x 1 3/4 in.)
Andrew W. Mellon Collection
1937.1.66
On View
From the Tour: German Painting and Sculpture in the Late 1400s and 1500s
Object 10 of 12

Conservation Notes

The support is a single piece of linden with vertically oriented grain.[1] The original panel, which was probably thinned, has been marouflaged to a secondary panel and cradled. Examination with infrared reflectography did not disclose underdrawing. The original ground and paint layers do not extend to the extreme edges, although a thin nonoriginal layer and brown overpaint[2] have been applied to the edges.

Examinations in 1973 and 1988 yielded very little hard information about the monogram and date. Both appear to lie directly on the paint surface without an intervening layer, and both have been on the painting long enough to develop the crackle pattern of the black paint underneath. X-ray fluorescence indicated the similarity of the paints, but this cannot be taken as an indication of whether or not the date and monogram were executed at the same time.

The painting is generally in good condition. There are several long vertical checks in the panel. Along the checks and in the face of the sitter there are scattered paint losses that have been filled and inpainted.


[1] The wood was identified by Peter Klein, examination report, 29 September 1987, in NGA curatorial files.
[2] Examination of the brown paint under x-ray fluorescence indicated the presence of cadmium and zinc, suggesting that the paint was manufactured in the nineteenth or twentieth century.

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