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Portrait of a Nobleman in Armor
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Portrait of a Nobleman in Armor


Description Exhibitions Provenance Credit
Description Portraits of the nobility were often conservative in terms of presenting the subject’s status, but novelty in technique was admired, especially for inclusion in a Chamber of Wonders. Wax became popular for this use in the later 1500s in court circles. It is an attractive material to interpret human skin because of its texture and potential translucency. The subject wears half armor (above the waist) with a collar datable to the 1600s. His left hand rests decisively on his hip. The present “shadow box” is old but not necessarily original. The frame is modern but designed to suggest a period treatment. A note in the Walters' files suggest an identification as Marchese Ginori of Florence but without any documentation. The Ginori were an important aristocratic family, but no connection to this portrait has been found.
Exhibitions
  • World of Wonder. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1971-1972.
Provenance Jacques Seligmann, Paris, by purchase; Henry Walters, Baltimore, 1912, by purchase; Walters Art Museum, 1931, by bequest.
Credit Acquired by Henry Walters, 1912

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Creator
Period
1620-50 (Baroque)
Medium
molded, polychromed bees' wax with traces of pine resin
(Resin, Wax & Composite)
Accession Number
75.2
Measurements
H of figure: 8 7/16 × W: 7 in. (21.5 × 17.8 cm); Framed H: 13 9/16 × W: 11 5/8 × D: 3 5/8 in. (34.5 × 29.5 × 9.2 cm).

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