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In this painting, Prince William II (1625–1650) is pictured aged about five or six. His pose is formal and the slight turn of the head and the arm bent at the elbow express elegance and indicate the boy’s aristocratic origins. In the background we see an orange tree with fruit symbolising the House of orange but the drapery with the crest of the House of Nassau confirm the prince’s ties to the Germany duchy. With the help of the light, the artist has accentuated the prince’s face and hand, giving the subject a psychologically subtle character – the gentle features of the boy’s face exude self-respect. The painting in the museum collection is a copy of another very similar work by the artist. We know that because of the many commissions, van Dyck was assisted by his pupils however, the fine transitions of colour and the beautiful golden brown colouring typical of the artist’s painting style confirm that the painting was made in his workshop.

Details

  • Title: Portrait of William II, Prince of Orange-Nassau
  • Creator: Workshop of Anthonis van Dyck
  • Date: 1632
  • Location Created: Flanders
  • Physical Dimensions: 102.5 x 123 cm
  • History: Acquired from the collection of Friedrich Wilhelm Brederlo (1905/1906)
  • Type: Painting
  • Rights: Latvian National Museum of Art
  • Medium: Oil on canvas

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