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Italian, Venetian, A Concert

Key facts
Full title A Concert
Artist Italian, Venetian
Date made mid-1520s
Medium and support Oil on canvas, transferred from wood
Dimensions 90.8 × 122.2 cm
Acquisition credit Bequeathed by Lady Lindsay, 1912
Inventory number NG2903
Location Not on display
Collection Main Collection
A Concert
Italian, Venetian

Three young ladies are making music in a landscape of meadows and lakes. They are dressed in expensive clothes made from voluminous quantities of sumptuous silk, damask, brocade and velvet. The costumes, with their particularly extravagant sleeves, and the ornamentally plaited hair of the lady on the right can be dated to the 1520s.

The lady on the left holds the neck of a lute, and turns to look at us as though we have disturbed their playing. Her companion continues to play energetically, her arms spread around her instrument, while their friend, also unaware of our presence, continues to hold up the music. The score is for the lute as there are no words. If they are singing, it must be by heart.

The treatment of the subject is close to Palma Vecchio’s Three Sisters (Gemäldegalerie, Dresden), but the style of the work suggests that it may be by an artist from Friuli.

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