It is no wonder that the 19th-century Realists were impressed by the vitality of Hals’s portraits. The rapidity of the brushstrokes that capture the likeness while preserving the drawing is matchless. He also captured a type brilliantly. She keeps her distance, this 57-year-old clergyman’s wife. She is neither stiff nor stolid, but reserved. As was only fitting in those days.
In some sources Judith van Breda is named as woman on the portrait. Is this possible? Or is it a wrong assumption? Betty
Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen answered
Dear Betty, Yes, this is possible. Considering the pose of the woman (at an angle, looking to the right), there must have been a counterpart for this portrait. In 1934 the portrait of Hendrick Swalmius by Frans Hals was discovered to be this counterpart, so the painting in Boijmans must show his wife. We know that Swalmius was married in 1600 to Judith van Breda. Unfortunately, since we don’t know her exact date of death, we can’t be completely sure that this 57-year old woman is her.
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|Title||Portrait of a 57-Year-Old Woman|
|Material and technique||Oil on panel|
Painting > Painting > Two-dimensional object > Art object
|Location||This object is in storage|
Width 21 cm
Height 29.5 cm
Frans Hals (I)
|Accession number||2498 (OK)|
|Credits||Verworven met de verzameling van / Acquired with the collection of: D.G. van Beuningen 1958|
|Age artist||About 59 years old|
|Collector||Collector / D.G. van Beuningen|
The Collection Enriched (2011)
|Geographical origin||Northern Netherlands > The Netherlands > Western Europe > Europe|
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