FRANS HALS

Portraits of a Man and a Woman

1638

Oil on oakwood
Inv. No. 77, 78

95 × 71 cm

zur  Biographie

Dated 1638, these representative portraits of a wealthy burgher and his wife show Frans Hals at the height of his ability and shed light on why he was among the most prominent portrait painters of the Dutch Golden Age. With a brushstroke that is as loose and free as it is precisely placed, he has succeeded in capturing the married couple before a neutral background in a manner both spontaneous and realistic, while at the same time clearly conveying their status and personalities in their appearance. The identities of the sitters are unknown; Johann Friedrich Städel, who once acquired the paintings for his collection, believed they depicted Peter Paul Rubens and his first wife.

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