Jan Lievens (1607 - 1674)
Portrait of Admiral Maarten Harpertszoon Tromp (1597-1653)
Black chalk on cream paper
12 1/3 x 12 1/4 in. • 310 x 311 mm
Jan Lievens's (1607-1674) Portrait of Admiral Maarten Harpertszoon Tromp (1652/53) is both extraordinarily familiar to us and yet also completely new. The image in question ripples throughout the history of Dutch portraiture, casting a long shadow over the portraits of successive Dutch admirals, over their tombs, over the facades of Amsterdam, spilling even onto modern coins and stamps. We are confronted with an image we have seen over and over again yet know extremely little about. We know this man but have never met him. Neither the exact circumstances of the commission nor the exact time and place of the meeting between Admiral Maarten Tromp (1598-August 31,1653) and Lievens is known, and yet this image has left traces everywhere.