Circle of Daniel Mytens The Elder, also known as Daniel Mitjens (Netherlands/England, c. 1590- c. 1648), oil on canvas life-sized portrait of a nobleman, standing full length, with a spaniel dog at his feet. The subject, identified by card en verso as The Earl of Dorset, has dark hair and facial hair, and is attired in a black coat and tights, lace collar and sleeve ornaments, with white gloves and the handle of a sword visible at his hip; with red stockings and black shoes with lace puffs. A blue silk drape billows behind the man and dog, and wainscot paneling adorns the background. Unframed: 85 1/2"H x 49 1/2"W. English or Dutch, second quarter 17th century. Provenance: A Nashville, Tennessee estate. Note: The card en verso also identifying the subject, also identifes the artist as "Daniel Mythen circa 1800". However, both Mitjens and his son, Daniel Mytens the Younger, were deceased by 1700, and this painting appears to pre-date 1800 in our opinion. Daniel Mythen was a Dutch born portrait painter who trained in the Hague but worked primarily in England. In 1625, he became court painter to Charles I, and produced such a large number of full length portraits of the monarch that it is assumed he had assistance from other painters in his workshop. Mytens fell out of favor, however, in the 1630s with the arrival of painter Anthony van Dyck. Mitjens returned to the Netherlands and eventually worked as an art dealer, acquiring works for noble clients including the Earl of Arundel. Mytens also was known to have made copies of old portraits of royal sitters. CONDITION: Unframed. Loss of detail to subject's face due to overcleaning or overpainting (ref. blacklight photos). Upper right quadrant: repaired 4" patch tear with some overpainting; 1" scratch at upper right edge; 2" repaired tear at subject's left hand. Lower right quadrant: 6" scratch affecting one shoe and floor area. Upper left quadrant: 1/8" reverse indention and a 1" indention, both in drapery area. 1" scratch in center across subject's chest. Lower left quadrant: 2 small possible repairs on dog's back, 1" repaired tear across dog's paw. All scratches and indentions accompanied by miniscule areas of paint loss, but overall the painting is in good condition. The painting appears to have been cleaned and revarnished in the 20th century and paint is worn thin on the lower half of the canvas. Relined. Scattered other scratches up to 1 1/2" across all quadrants. Blacklight indicates a 3" area of repair with inpainting above dog's head and another 3" area in drapery; some inpainting along side of subject's face between skin and hair; 1/2" area of touch up on subject's left hand with possible area of repair or repainting around index finger.
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