Skip to main content

Giovanni Antonio Boltraffio, Portrait of a Man in Profile

Key facts
Full title Portrait of a Man in Profile
Artist Giovanni Antonio Boltraffio
Artist dates about 1467 - 1516
Date made probably about 1500
Medium and support Oil on walnut
Dimensions 57.5 × 43 cm
Acquisition credit Mond Bequest, 1924
Inventory number NG3916
Location Not on display
Collection Main Collection
Previous owners
Portrait of a Man in Profile
Giovanni Antonio Boltraffio

The man in this portrait was once thought to be Gerolamo Casio, a poet from Bologna. He and Boltraffio knew one another and Casio even mentioned Boltraffio’s skill at painting in his sonnets.

This attractive idea is now doubted, but there’s no question that the work is by Boltraffio. One of Leonardo’s apprentices in Milan, Boltraffio adopted his master’s style more faithfully than any of his other students. His use of shadow to model the man’s jowls and the flesh of his nose resembles the style Leonardo developed in Milan. The profile view was outdated in most of Italy when this was painted – Leonardo himself favoured a broader view of his sitters' faces – but the Milanese courts were a little more conservative, so it persisted there for longer.

Download image
Download low-resolution image

Download a low-resolution copy of this image for personal use.

License this image

License and download a high-resolution image for reproductions up to A3 size from the National Gallery Picture Library.

License image
Download low-resolution image

This image is licensed for non-commercial use under a Creative Commons agreement.

Examples of non-commercial use are:

  • Research, private study, or for internal circulation within an educational organisation (such as a school, college or university)
  • Non-profit publications, personal websites, blogs, and social media

The image file is 800 pixels on the longest side.

As a charity, we depend upon the generosity of individuals to ensure the collection continues to engage and inspire. Help keep us free by making a donation today.

Download low-resolution image

You must agree to the Creative Commons terms and conditions to download this image.

Creative Commons Logo