(b. 1452, Firenze, d. 1525, Firenze)

Portrait of a Young Man, Portrait of a Young Woman

c. 1500
Tempera on wood, 45 x 34 cm (each panel)
Staatliche Museen, Berlin

Although these portraits are catalogued in the Berlin museum under the name of Bastiano Mainardi, Domenico Ghirlandaio's follower and posthumous brother-in-law, recent research attributes them to Davide Ghirlandaio.

No portraits of married Italian couples survive as a diptych that can be opened and closed in the manner of a book. Yet it is likely that these pairs of panels initially were joined to one another by attached hinges. Most of the surviving portraits of married couples depict courtly rulers, such as Ercole de' Roberti's portraits of the overlord of Bologna, and his wife, or Piero della Francesca's celebrated portraits of Federigo da Montefeltro and his wife. These are strict profile portraits facing one another. Ghirlandaio's husband and wife are not rulers but high ranking members of Florentine society. These portraits show the husband in three-quarter view in front of a landscape with a city, but the wife in profile, cut off in a loggia and housebound.