HALS, Frans
(b. 1580, Antwerpen, d. 1666, Haarlem)

Gypsy Girl

Oil on wood, 58 x 52 cm
Musée du Louvre, Paris

With this portrait of a jovial gipsy wench, Hals continues in the Caravaggesque tradition of popular subjects which was imported from Rome by Terbrugghen and Honthorst. However, it is the exuberance of the light and colourful brushstrokes of his technique which conveys the sensation of spontaneity and life in this painting. The actual handling of the paint has now become a means of expression in itself.