The Tailor ('Il Tagliapanni')

The portrait is a late work, probably around 1570, and the most famous of Moroni's portraits; it was already celebrated in the 17th century, when it was in the Grimani collection in Venice.

The colourful costume of the tailor is contrasted with the black material marked with chalk lines that he prepares to cut. Most of the sitters in Moroni's later portraits are dressed in black in the Spanish fashion that persisted into the following century. The tailor's head, lit from above to the left, dominates the painting, the eyes, as in the majority of Moroni's portraits, looking directly at the spectator with shrewd appraisal.

Key facts

Artist dates
1520/4 - 1579
Full title
The Tailor ('Il Tagliapanni')
Date made
Medium and support
Oil on canvas
99.5 x 77 cm
Acquisition credit
Bought, 1862
Inventory number
Location in Gallery