National Gallery of Art - THE COLLECTION
image of Marchesa Elena Grimaldi Cattaneo Sir Anthony van Dyck (artist)
Flemish, 1599 - 1641
Marchesa Elena Grimaldi Cattaneo, 1623
oil on canvas
overall: 242.9 x 138.5 cm (95 5/8 x 54 1/2 in.)
Widener Collection
1942.9.92
Not on View
From the Tour: Sir Anthony van Dyck
Object 5 of 15

With superb animation, the Marchesa Elena Grimaldi Cattaneo strolls before an imposing colonnade and turns to confront the viewer, whose presence she has just sensed. Van Dyck represented her cuffs in a bright red to match the parasol, making a triangular configuration of color around her self-assured face. In reality, the cuffs must have been white like her collar. The scarlet sunshade attracts attention to the head, much as a halo would in a religious image. Enhancing her almost supernatural status are the reverent eyes of her servant.

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