Rois, aristocrates et humanistes

Portraits de la Renaissance française

ISBN: 979-10-96561-15-5


English translation: Sharon Kerman

French portrait has a singular place in the Renaissance art. It has known how to incorporate Italian and Nordic influences and to transcend them in a unique and elegant style. The portrait or the enamel has to reflect the sponsor’s personality, his social status, even his political or religious camp.

French portrait then follows codified rules implemented by the first great artists of the 16th century, Jean Perréal and Jean Clouet. Above all, it is a court art of which the style is commanded by the sovereigns and the princes of blood. By extension, the rich merchants and the humanists also wanted to have their portraits painted to mark their importance.
This book gathers mostly new works of art made with really different techniques but forming a consistent ensemble and covering all French portrait styles from 1500 to 1600. The author, Alexandra Zvereva, specialist of the subject, has made new awardings and identifications with her meticulous method. She has also reviewed some artists who are not much studied since the beginning of the 20th century, like Léonard Limosin or the Dumonstier family. The biographies and the faces of the identified figures, sovereigns, aristocrats and humanists, plunge us into the Valois court and the history of this complex time.

21.2 x 30 cm
240 pages
171 illustrations