Portrait of a Woman with a Fan

Hals pays great attention to detail in the portrayal of this woman's elegant attire, which is characteristic of the period around 1640, when this picture was probably painted. She wears a large, flat three-tiered collar, silver bow and wide lace-trimmed cuffs. In her left hand she holds a fan made of feathers set in a gold mount, suspended from a golden chain.

Although the sitter has not been identified, the elegant dress and jewellery suggest that she may have been the wife of a wealthy citizen of Haarlem. Similiar clothes are worn by the woman depicted in the National Gallery's 'Portrait of a Man, a Woman and a Boy in a Room' by Pieter Codde, which is dated 1640, and in the 'Portrait of a Woman' by Johannes Conelisz. Verspronck (Enschede, Rijksmuseum Twenthe) which was painted in the same year.

Key facts

Artist dates
1582/3 - 1666
Full title
Portrait of a Woman with a Fan
Date made
about 1640
Medium and support
Oil on canvas
79.8 x 59 cm
Acquisition credit
Salting Bequest, 1910
Inventory number
Location in Gallery