80 of the finest painterly portraits of women ever made, carefully selected from the Old Masters to the 19th and 20th centuries.
Accompanied by select details on each work to view, study and be inspired by.
Including works by:
Painterly portraits of women
I I organized 80 portraits of women from the Old Masters to the early 20th century as outstanding examples of the painterly portrait, beautiful in both brushwork and subject. These paintings often turned out to be zenith moments in what these artists were trying to do with their art. Sometimes even going full supernova on art history in the cases of Velazquez, Rembrandt and Vermeer. These works show how these different painters were in fact similar. By the way they all accessed the full power of paint, brushwork and color in bringing their portraits to life. Showcasing the unique magnificence that can be achieved with the painterly portrait.
As you can tell, I have always felt painterly portraits excelled at the subject of women. Part of the reason why I wanted to make this book is to collect the best of these portraits to see how it all fits together. To me, keeping the focus on women makes it easier to enjoy portraiture as whole because the task or the intentions of the painter becomes clearer. Men and women tend to project different kind of energies when they are painted. It is a lot easier to view them apart then having to switch back and forth your perceptions when they are together in the same book. As a theme of painting, each is deserving of their own volume of portraiture.
What is Painterly?
Painterly is often associated with bravura brushwork or alla prima painting but there can be more to it than that. Paint can be transparent, organized into color shapes, drift into pure abstraction, into impasto, be blurred or combine all those effects together. The goal being is to harness oil paint's abstract properties and design of the picture in order to achieve a new reality, giving the portrait more life. I believe the more you access the full power of paint, the more you get back. These are 80 of the finest examples of that philosophy in motion.