Oil on canvas
Inscribed in the upper left corner: “ANNO DNI/ M DC II/ BENIGNA AET/ SUAE 1 ½”
Dimensions: 86 x 45 cm, 102 x 61 cm (framed)
Dated 1602 , this exquisite artwork encapsulates the timeless charm of portraiture, capturing the innocence and regality of a child named Benigna at the age of 1.5 years.
In the heart of the composition, Benigna stands upright, a symbol of burgeoning curiosity and nascent grace. Clasping a decorated cloth in their tiny hand. The richness of the fabric adorning Benigna, along with golden ornaments and hoops, speaks to the affluence and discerning taste of the child's family. Each detail, meticulously painted by the Flemish-Spanish artist, attests to the skillful fusion of Flemish artistic sensibilities and the grandeur associated with Spanish portraiture.
A lace collar, delicately draped, frames the child's countenance, adding an air of sophistication that belies their age. On Benigna's head rests a headband adorned with small diamonds and precious stones, a regal crown befitting the young subject's inherent nobility. The artist's attention to these ornamental details elevates the portrait to a visual symphony of luxury and elegance.
Benigna's gaze, directed squarely at the audience, is a captivating beacon of innocence and potential. The child's eyes mirror the purity of a soul unscathed by the complexities of the world. A slight blush on Benigna's cheeks hints at the rosy vitality of youth, while the artist's skill in capturing this delicate nuance adds a touch of warmth to the portrait.
Amidst the grandeur and opulence, the artist infuses the painting with an intimate quality, inviting viewers to share in the joyous celebration of childhood. Benigna's portrait transcends time, offering a glimpse into the aspirations and pride of a family that sought to immortalize the precious stages of their beloved child's life.
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