Property from a Spanish Private Collection
FRANS FLORIS THE ELDER
Antwerp 1519/20 - 1570
The head of a bearded man in a red hat
signed with monogram upper right: FF
oil on oak panel
45 x 33 cm.; 17¾ x 13 in.
The painting is in excellent over all condition. The support consists of a single oak panel, which is stable and supported by a half cradle on the reverse. The paint surface appears to be very well preserved beneath a thick layer of lightly discoloured old varnish. Ultra-violet light is impeded by the varnish, but only reveals very minor scattered spot retouchings and possibly some strengthening to the hand.
This lot is offered with modern parcel gilt and velvet lined wood frame in good condition.
"In response to your inquiry, we are pleased to provide you with a general report of the condition of the property described above. Since we are not professional conservators or restorers, we urge you to consult with a restorer or conservator of your choice who will be better able to provide a detailed, professional report. Prospective buyers should inspect each lot to satisfy themselves as to condition and must understand that any statement made by Sotheby's is merely a subjective, qualified opinion. Prospective buyers should also refer to any Important Notices regarding this sale, which are printed in the Sale Catalogue.
NOTWITHSTANDING THIS REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF BUSINESS PRINTED IN THE SALE CATALOGUE."
Anonymous sale, London, Sotheby's, 19 March 1975, lot 101, where acquired by the father of the present owner.
Frans Floris pioneered the creation of carefully observed head studies, painted from life, which he retained in his workshop to serve as models for future compositions. The present head appears as one of the crowd surrounding Christ in Floris' 1562 panel The Sacrifice of Jesus Christ, Son of God, Bringing Together and Protecting Humanity in the Musée du Louvre, Paris.1
1 Inv. no. 20746; see V. Pomarède, The Louvre: All the Paintings, New York 2011, p. 246, reproduced.