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30 of 2,627 paintings
Leonardo Loredan knows that he is being looked at, but he does not return our gaze. He is the doge, the ruler of the Venetian Republic; elected in 1501, he ruled until his death in 1521.He wears white silk damask robes woven with gold and silver metal thread, clothing reserved for the most splend...
At the age of 12, Jesus was taken to the Temple in Jerusalem by Mary and Joseph, who became accidentally separated from him. They found him three days later debating learnedly with the theologians there (Luke 2: 41). This is the moment at which Christ first identifies himself as the son of God: ‘...
This portrait of Mr Robert (1725–1806) and Mrs Frances Andrews (about 1732–1780) is the masterpiece of Gainsborough’s early career. It has been described as a ‘triple portrait’ – of Robert Andrews, his wife and his land.Behind Mr and Mrs Andrews is a wide view looking south over the valley of the...
The low horizon gives a vast sky – very much how a sailor in a small boat at sea experiences the world. But the men working on the vessels seem unconcerned with the view: these are inshore working craft.In the centre is a smalschip, a transport vessel carrying a Dutch ensign. Beached on the spit...
Not on display
In a quiet, dark room, a little girl folds her hands to say grace. She looks straight ahead as she has been taught to do when at prayer by her mother – her gaze is fixed so that nothing can tempt her away from her devotions. Books of emblems and instruction from the church laid emphasis on the im...
Not on display
These four small pictures were probably painted for a piece of furniture, perhaps the case of a musical instrument. They illustrate the key episodes of the Second Eclogue by Antonio Tebaldeo (1456–1538), a poet from Ferrara.In the first scene the shepherd Damon broods over his unrequited love for...
Not on display
The Virgin Mary sits on a stepped bench in front of a bed of roses, the infant Christ resting on her lap. He hangs on to his mother’s veil, raising his other hand in a gesture of greeting. Both figures make direct eye contact with the viewer, while an angel to either side holds a jewelled crown o...
Not on display
A powerful hound brings life into this picture – surrounded by dead creatures, the dog pauses, head turned, alert to the call of a horn blown by the huntsman on the right. Light bounces off the belly of a hare, the flowing curve of the heron’s wing and the dog’s snout. The artist’s considerable s...
This painting shows the inside of the famous rotunda (demolished in 1805) at Ranelagh Gardens in Chelsea. Ranelegh opened in 1742 as one of London’s most prestigious pleasure gardens, and its main attraction was this vast circular building in which fashionable society could attend balls and liste...
As Saint Nicholas of Tolentino (1245–1305) contemplates the Christ Child, rays of golden light impress a sun with the face of a cherub upon his breast. Christ eats the cherries offered by Saint Joseph, symbolising the fruit of paradise. Angels watch and play music; God the Father, together with t...
Not on display
Philips Wouwerman was an extremely successful painter in the Netherlands in the seventeenth century and was also a favourite in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. His paintings – landscapes with rural scenes being enacted in them – are full of movement, small dramas and incident, capturing...
Not on display
Dughet’s storm paintings were among his most admired works during his lifetime and in the eighteenth century. Two shepherds tending their flock struggle against the wind, their arms raised in alarm as they encourage their sheep to move down the path. The tree branches bend and twist against the f...
Not on display
This painting illustrates an episode described in the Old Testament (1 Samuel: 6-12), which is rarely depicted in art. The Ark – a wooden chest covered in gold containing the Ten Commandments – is pulled along on a cart drawn by cattle. It is being returned to the Israelites after the Philistines...
The legend of the abduction of the Sabine women by the Romans is described by several classical writers. While accounts vary, key details are consistent: Romulus, founder and then king of Rome, had built an impressive city, but there was a shortage of women. He invited the Sabines, who lived in t...
Aert van der Neer was one of the most successful specialists in moonlit landscapes, and this is one of many he painted. The moon here has appeared only briefly, breaking through a tiny gap in a cloudy sky. The cool light creates a contrast between the deep darkness in the shadowy outlines of the...
Not on display
A black eagle soars into the clouds with a naked youth clutched in its talons. In Greek mythology, Jupiter was infatuated with the handsome youth Ganymede, whom he abducted in the guise of an eagle and carried away to the home of the gods, Mount Olympus, where he was made their cupbearer.The sole...
This is traditionally said to be a portrait of the Englishman John Scott, who bought the estate at Banks Fee, near Stow-on-the-Wold in Gloucestershire, in 1753. During the early 1770s – around the same time as this work was produced – Scott did travel to Rome, where the famous portraitist Batoni...
An angry tide surges around two small transport boats heading for disaster under a stormy sky. The crew of the kaag, desperate to avoid collision with the fast approaching smalschip, have released the horizontal spar to take the wind out of the mainsail. This way, the vessel will slow and – with...
Not on display
We don't know who these people are, but they wear the restrained costume of prosperous, Protestant Dutch people in the 1660s. Either woman could be the man’s wife; it has also been suggested that the younger woman is a maid, or the couple’s daughter.There may be some clues. The younger woman hold...
Not on display
You've viewed 30 of 2,627 paintings