Portrait of a Gentleman

Due to copyright restrictions, access to this image is restricted to certain sizes outside the University of Michigan.
A middle age man in a powdered wig is shown in a bust-length portrait against an undifferentiated blue background. In addition to the wig, he is wearing a mauve silk coat, orange waistcoat, and ruffled white shirt. His shoulders are in profile to the viewer, but the sitter turns his head and looks in the direction of the viewer. The expression is one of great intelligence, wit and even humor.
Maurice-Quentin de La Tour
c. 1750
De La Tour was considered the consummate master of the pastel medium. His penetrating portrayals of the aristocracy and royalty were as developed and complete as oil paintings—and as sought after. His sitters included Madame de Pompadour, the official mistress of Louis XV, herself an accomplished artist. This bust-length portrait of an unknown sitter shares the informality of the Perronneau portrait of Laurent Cars.
Museum purchase made possible by the W. Hawkins Ferry Fund
Tuesday, June 28, 2022