127
127

THE PROPERTY OF A LADY

Attributed to William Larkin
PORTRAIT OF A LADY, HALF-LENGTH, WEARING AN ELABORATELY EMBROIDERED WAISTCOAT WITH RED AND YELLOW RIBBONS, LACE COLLAR AND LACE CAP, HOLDING A PRAYER BOOK
Estimate
40,00060,000
LOT SOLD. 150,000 GBP
JUMP TO LOT
127

THE PROPERTY OF A LADY

Attributed to William Larkin
PORTRAIT OF A LADY, HALF-LENGTH, WEARING AN ELABORATELY EMBROIDERED WAISTCOAT WITH RED AND YELLOW RIBBONS, LACE COLLAR AND LACE CAP, HOLDING A PRAYER BOOK
Estimate
40,00060,000
LOT SOLD. 150,000 GBP
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Old Masters Day Sale

|
London

Attributed to William Larkin
ACTIVE LONDON 1580 - 1619
PORTRAIT OF A LADY, HALF-LENGTH, WEARING AN ELABORATELY EMBROIDERED WAISTCOAT WITH RED AND YELLOW RIBBONS, LACE COLLAR AND LACE CAP, HOLDING A PRAYER BOOK

Provenance

With Peter Wengraf, The Arcade Gallery, London;
From whom purchased in 1948 by the late husband of the present owner.

Catalogue Note

This lady wears black jet bead earrings, looped and tied with black ribbon bows, designed to add emphasis to the shape of the sitter's face, in contrast to her skin tone and the white of her elaborate lace collar. The collar itself is a type of horizontal standing band, supported on a supportasse, of a type that was particularly fashionable from 1612. The punto in aria lace contains floral and decorative motifs of birds, flowers and crowns, interspersed with unusual and distinctive silhouettes of dancing figures.

The sitter's elaborately decorated waistcoat is embellished with flowers and strawberries, the colours of which are picked up by the red and yellow ribbons which fasten it at the front.1 The artist has used tiny diagonal strokes of yellow to suggest the gold braid of the branches, achieved in reality by a complicated double plaited braid stitch using silver-gilt filé. It is also clear from this portrait how the embroidery was used to disguise the straight seam lines of the sleeves. Over this the lady wears a gown with blackwork embroidery and scalloped edges, trimmed with spangles – an early form of sequins, which were cut from sheets of gold or silver-gilt, often punched through off-centre so they would hang at angles and catch the light.

1 An extant example of such a garment, richly embroidered, complete with ribbons and remarkably well-preserved, is in the Fashion Museum, Bath, inv. no. BATMC 1.13.132; see A. Reynolds, In Fine Style. The art of Tudor and Stuart fashion, London 2013, pp. 164–68, reproduced in colour.

Old Masters Day Sale

|
London