Category Archives: Connoisseurship

18th-c. English portrait of a transvestite

The National Gallery in London has recently acquired a portrait of the Chevalier d’Eon, the diplomat, soldier, spy, and transvestite. For political, and possibly personal, reasons he dressed as a woman.  She was highly regarded by her contemporaries.  This portrait is one of the earliest, and perhaps clearest, depictions of cross-dressing.  Here’s the article.  Be sure to click on the “magnify” button to see the full portrait.

What do you think?

Master of Flémalle

An extraordinary series of paintings by 15th-c. Netherlandish artists associated with the mysterious “Master of Flemalle” is on exhibit at the Städel Museum in Frankfurt, Germany.  The exhibit is here reviewed by Michael Kimmelman in the New York Times, December 11, 2008.  Don’t miss the slide show!

This is an important exhibit that raises the issue of connoisseurship and what it means to us today as art historians.  And the paintings are grand!

Master of Flémalle, Portrait of a Stout Man

Master of Flémalle, Portrait of a Stout Man