National Gallery of Art - THE COLLECTION
image of The Suitor's Visit Gerard ter Borch the Younger (painter)
Dutch, 1617 - 1681
The Suitor's Visit, c. 1658
oil on canvas
overall: 80 x 75 cm (31 1/2 x 29 1/2 in.) framed: 110.8 x 106 x 12.7 cm (43 5/8 x 41 3/4 x 5 in.)
Andrew W. Mellon Collection
1937.1.58
On View
From the Tour: Johannes Vermeer and Dutch Scenes of Daily Life in the 1600s
Object 6 of 8

Conservation Notes

The tightly woven, plain-weave fabric support, composed of fine irregularly spun threads, was lined with the tacking margins trimmed. Broad cusping is visible along the left and right edges. A smooth beige ground is striated with white in places, suggesting the presence of a white underlayer.

Thin fluid paint layers are applied freely and blended wet into wet in a series of thin scumbles of liquid, soft-edged colors. Fine details are painted wet over dry. Flesh tones are composed of a gray underpainting, thinly glazed to form shading, more thickly overpainted to create light areas. Microscopic examination reveals a change in the placement of the dog's front legs and an adjustment of the suitor's proper lefthand gesture.

Although the background has probably darkened over time, the painting is in relatively good condition, with small abraded losses in the thinly applied darks. The suitor's proper right arm was extensively retouched and the musician's necklace reinforced. No conservation work has been carried out since acquisition.

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