After the 16th century improvement in England, commissions for spiritual art decreased and also commissions for portraits boosted in good numbers. The aristocracy had actually their portraitspainted come send messages about wealth, social standing, and also political status. Portraits were also used to legitimize the monarchy and also the stand of title court figures. Having a portrait painted by one acclaimed artist would certainly send a strong message that a who high status. In the very same way, generations later, family members showed their important heritage by displaying portraits of their eminentancestors.

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In Tudor England, Henry VIII’s court painter was Hans Holbein the Younger (1497-1543). Holbein’s portrait ofHenry VIII,painted in 1537, projects a an effective image that the monarch.


Portrait the Henry VIII by the workshop of Hans Holbein the Younger

Another 16th century brother school painting of Henry VIII withJane Seymourand Prince Edwardestablished succession.In the painting, Edward is displayed beside his father. Henry"s 2 older daughters, Lady Mary and also Lady Elizabeth, are placed away from the in the wings, to decrease greatlytheir importance as followers to the throne.


The family members of Henry VIII c. 1545 Painted by an unknown artist. Oil on canvas, 141 x 355 centimeter Left come Right: "Mother Jak", The Lady Mary, Prince Edward, Henry VIII, jane Seymour, The Lady Elizabeth and also Wil royal CollectionSomers ,The

Another early on painter at the british court was Peter Lely (1618-1680), portrait artist to Charles I. Lely to be Dutch, despite his career was greatly spent in Englandwhere he come in 1641, close come the time another eminent dutch British court painter, Anthony van Dyck (1599-1641) died. Valve Dyck had developed and made renowned a format of portraiture in England affected by the dutch baroque that was more relaxed and also naturalistic than previous styles. Peter Lely and his contemporaries continued this style. In Peter Lely’s portrait ofMary Ashe, Viscountess Townshend(a copy that which will be on revenue oniGavel AuctionsstartingNovember 14thin A sale of well Art and Antiques, closingDecember 5th) one deserve to see some of the advance of this baroque style, consisting of dramatic contrast through the location junxtap of light and also dark, muted lines, and also an atmospheric quality. Often illustrated in a naturalistic pose, as opposed come the stiff stylized figures of Holbein, the physical details the the sitter are less realistic and also often the sitter’s likeness ishighly idealized.


After sir Peter Lely, Portrait of mar Ashe, Viscountess Townshend, Oil ~ above CanvasUpcoming Auction: calculation $10,000- 15,000

Later, in 18thcentury Georgian England, need from the aristocracy, the fashionable, and also even the middle course caused the industry for portraits come flourish. Artist from britain led by Joshua Reynolds (1723-1792) began to conquer the field. Many of the portrait and art job-related was centered in London in ~ the time, yet a portrait painter to King George IV, sir Henry Raeburn (1756-1823) ongoing to live in his aboriginal Scotland. His paint is prized for its realism, that dramatic bright effects, and true likeness of the sitter. Raeburn was able to combine less idealized depictions of the sitter through the naturalism occurred in the 17thcentury, and also his portrait of the renowned Shakespearean actressSarah Siddons(on sale now is an example of this dramatic mix.

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Sir Henry Raeburn (British 1756-1823) Mrs. Sarah Siddons,Oil top top CanvasNOW LIVE: estimate $25,000- 40,000

The paint by Raeburn is no an idealized photo of the sitter, together is anearlier portrait the Mrs. Siddons painted through Joshua Reynolds in 1784; Raeburn"s is a an ext true likeness, in numerous ways better conveying the the power of this good actress.


Sir Joshua Reynolds, Mrs. Siddons together the disastrous Muse, 1784, Oil ~ above Canvas

Although portraiturein England evolvedstylisticallyfrom the16th century to the 18th century, the usage and definition stayed the same. Whether the sitter was presented in astiff pose and astylized manner or more relaxed and naturalistic with loosened brushwork,the image was constantly meant to convey status.