CRANACH, Lucas the Younger
(b. 1515, Wittenberg, d. 1586, Weimar)
Portrait of a Woman1539
Oil on panel, 62 x 42 cm
Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza, Madrid
In line with the standard conventions of German portraiture in the first half of the 16th century, the sitter is shown slightly more than half-length, and slightly turned to one side, and is set against a plain, strong blue background. A clean bright light falls uniformly on the sitter, making the ivory quality of the skin other hands and face stand out against her dark clothes and the background. The artist pays attention to details, without giving them too much emphasis. The rings, the belt, the collar and the net of pearls holding up her hair are painted delicately and without showiness, giving the whole work great elegance.