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Frans Hals, Pendant portraits of Pieter Dircksz Tjarck and Marie Larp

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Pendant portraits of Pieter Dircksz Tjarck and Marie Larp


These pendants depict the Haarlem couple Pieter Tjarck and Marie Larp. They likely commissioned Frans Hals to paint their portraits shortly after their wedding in 1634, when Hals was at the height of his career as the most eminent portrait painter in Haarlem.

Donning an impressive moustache, Tjarck wears a wide-brimmed hat and casually rests his elbow on the top of his chair while dangling a rose from his hand – a symbol of love for his wife. His relaxed pose contrasts sharply with Larp’s upright stance. Her hand gesture may reciprocate his affection, indicating that love resides in the heart, but it mostly draws attention to her faultless posture. Hals’s fluid brushwork records the varied textures of her fine linen, thick gold embroidery and delicate lace, imparting a pleasant, personable character to the sitter’s rosy-cheeked face.