François Clouet, studio of - Portrait of Margaret of France - image-1

Lot 1015 Nα

François Clouet, studio of - Portrait of Margaret of France

Auction 1087 - overview Cologne
20.05.2017, 11:00 - Old Master Paintings and Drawings, Sculpture
Estimate: 30.000 € - 40.000 €
Result: 52.080 € (incl. premium)

François Clouet, studio of

Portrait of Margaret of France

Oil on panel. 31.5 x 23 cm.

This portrait, painted in the workshop of François Clouet, shows Margaret of France, daughter of King Francis I and sister of Henry II. In accordance with contemporary French fashion, the sitter wears a white gown interwoven with gold thread and embroidered with pearls. Her clothing, hairstyle and jewellery all attest to her high status as a member of the House of Valois.
The significance of this portrait arises in part from its similarity to a drawing by François Clouet formerly owned by Catherine de' Medici, wife of Henry II and sister-in-law to Margaret (cf. illus. 1, Musée Condé, Chantilly, inv. no. MN22). Comparison of the drawing in the Musée Condé to the present work reveals great similarity in the features and the clothing, and the dimensions of the two works are almost identical. Due to this similarity to the drawing as well as the quality of painting exhibited by this work, it was long considered to be an original by Clouet.
Margaret of France was born in 1523 as the youngest daughter of Francis I of France and carried the title Duchess of Berry as of 1550. Her fate as Princess of the House of Valois was largely determined by European politics: She was initially promised to the future King of Spain, but following the Peace of Cateau-Cambrésis was married off by her brother to Emanuel Philibert of Savoy in 1559 when she was 36 years old. Her wedding had to be pulled forward due to a jousting accident, in which her brother was seriously wounded, and he died just one day after the marriage.
The sketch by Clouet in the Musée Condé bears the inscription “Madame de Savoië”; but this is a later addition. This portrait was probably made during the early 1550s, long before her marriage to the Duke of Savoy, when she was in her late 20s.


Alexandra Zvereva, August Saint Germain en Laye, 2012.


J. M. Cargher Collection. – Auctioned by Christie´s, London, 6.4.1951, lot 4. – Captain E. G. Spencer-Churchill, The Northwick Park Collection. – Auctioned by Christie´s, London, 29.10.1965, lot 19 (attributed to François Clouet). – Dr. Hans Wetzlar Collection. – Auctioned by Sotheby´s Mak van Waay, Amsterdam, 9.6.1977, lot 27 (attributed to François Clouet). – Auctioned by Christie´s, Amsterdam, 1.11.2011, lot 84. – Continental private collection.


Singer Museum, Laren, Keuze uit de verzameling Dr. H. A. Wetzlar schilderijen uit de 15e – 17e eeuw, 1968/1969, no. 8, illus. 13 (attributed to François Clouet; labelled to the reverse).