Oct 9, 2013
Jan 18, 2007
Feb 23, 2011
Feb 23, 2011

Portrait of a Woman, probably Aeltje Dircksdr. Pater

Portrait of a Woman, probably Aeltje Dircksdr. Pater


Frans Hals

(Dutch, c. 1581–1666)

Oil on canvas

Framed: 82 x 67 x 6.5 cm (32 5/16 x 26 3/8 x 2 9/16 in.); Unframed: 66.5 x 52.3 cm (26 3/16 x 20 9/16 in.)

Purchase from the J. H. Wade Fund 1948.137


Did you know?

Jewelry, lace, and sumptuous fabrics show off this woman's wealth—and the artist's skill in painting them.


Portraits by Hals often feature bold, jagged brushstrokes. This portrait shows him experimenting with the “wet-into-wet,” technique, in which layers of paint were added in succession without being allowed to dry in between. Note the blended strokes used at the woman’s hairline to suggest individual strands of hair. The sitter has been tentatively identified as Aeltje Dircksdr. Pater (1597–1678), wife of the Haarlem brewer and burgomaster (mayor) Jan de Wael (1594–1663). An inscription states she was 41 when Hals painted her.

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