20th Century

Portrait of the Countess of Oxford, after Anthony Van Dyck – Early 20th Century

This painting is a partial reproduction of the portrait of Diana Cecil, Countess of Oxford, originally painted by Antony van Dyck in 1638. The wife of Robert de Vere, Count of Oxford, Diana Cecil is depicted here wearing a black silk dress, a pearl collar and pearl earrings, in accordance with the style in England in the 1630s. Her hair is styled loosely with curls hanging to her shoulders. The sitter is seated in a natural setting with a rocky outcrop as a backdrop.

 This portrait was painted circa 1910. The original of this painting joined the Royal Collection in 1745, and is presently on exhibit in the Prado Museum in Madrid, Spain. The painting does have one mysterious feature: On the stretcher there are a series of traditional Chinese characters we have not been able to entirely decipher (see photos). However, the phrases: “Payment for”, “please pass to”, “Mr. Nan Zhang”, “big shop/company” and “do not” appear in the text.

Artist: Unknown.
Unsigned. 
Technique: Oil on canvas.
Condition: Very good. Recently restored. Original stretcher.
Canvas: 44.4 x 59.4 cm. / 17.5 x 23.4 in.
Provenance: Auction, Madrid, Spain.