About this artwork
The youthful sitter in this portrait pauses to sharpen his quill pen in the midst of drawing a nude figure. On the shelf behind him are pots of paint, a shell probably used to mix pigment and binder, and a bottle of oil. It has often been assumed that this is a self-portrait, given the artist’s three-quarter pose and individualized physiognomy, down to the mole on his cheek. Whether the artist depicted himself or a colleague, the presentation here leaves no doubt as to the profession of this sitter or the painter’s esteem for it.
- German School
- Portrait of a Young Artist
- Oil on panel
- Inscribed over window: MN
- 18 × 12 7/8 in. (45.7 × 32.8 cm)
- Charles H. and Mary F. S. Worcester Collection