(b. 1494, Pontormo, d. 1557, Firenze)

Study of a Woman

c. 1543
Black chalk, 202 x 123 mm
Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence

In this drawing a young woman is shown bust length in what has been identified as widows's weeds. The costume and the pose of the face are identical to a portrait on panel identified as Maria Salviati, the mother of Cosimo I de' Medici. If the present drawing is a portrayal of Salviati, then Pontormo either was planning a historicizing portrait of her as a young widow or had executed the drawing many years earlier than the painting. Perhaps this drawing is really a costume study for a portrait of Salviati, for which Pontormo posed a workshop assistant in a widow's veil.