Portrait of Louise de Keroualle, Duchess of Portsmouth

Object Details

Title:

Portrait of Louise de Keroualle, Duchess of Portsmouth

Artist/Maker(s):

Peter Lely (English, 1618 - 1680)

Culture:

English

Date:

about 1671 - 1674

Medium:

Oil on canvas

Dimensions:

125.1 x 101.6 cm (49 1/4 x 40 in.)

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Louise de Keroualle, the duchess of Portsmouth, sits in front of a window open to a lush landscape. Her loosely draped blue silk dress reveals the creamy skin of her chest and neck. In a pose both sensual and elegant, with her head slightly turned, Louise de Keroualle looks down at the viewer as she plays with a thick, lush strand of her abundant hair. Her features--almond-shaped eyes, gently arched eyebrows, a straight nose, and full red lips--epitomized ideal beauty of the late 1600s.

Louise de Keroualle, who worked as a spy for Louis XIV, came to England from France as a Maid of Honour to the sister of King Charles II in 1670. Soon afterward, she became Charles's favorite mistress, and in 1673 he created for her the position of Duchess of Portsmouth. She used her influence to strengthen the friendship between Charles II and Louis XIV.

Provenance
by 1769 - 1819

George Harry Grey, fifth earl of Stamford and first earl of Warrington, 1737 - 1819 (Dunham Massey, Altrincham; England; Enville Hall, Staffordshire, England), probably by inheritance to his son, George Harry Grey, 1819.

1819 - 1845

Probably George Harry Grey, sixth earl of Stamford and second earl of Warrington, 1765 - 1845 (Enville Hall, Staffordshire, England), probably by inheritance to his grandson, George Harry Grey, 1845.

1845 - 1883

George Harry Grey, seventh earl of Stamford and third earl of Warrington, 1827 - 1883 (Enville Hall, Staffordshire, England), probably by inheritance (life interest only) to his second wife, Katherine Cocks, 1883.

1883 - 1905

Probably Katherine Cocks, countess of Stamford, died 1905 (Enville Hall, Staffordshire, England), probably by inheritance to her grandniece, Catherine Sarah Grey, 1905.

1905 -

Probably Lady Catherine Sarah (Payne) Grey, died 1925 (Enville Hall, Staffordshire, England), probably by inheritance to her son, John Foley Grey.

- 1928

Sir John Foley Grey, eighth Bart., 1893 - 1938 (Enville Hall, Stafford, England; Birmingham, West Midlands, England) [sold, Grey sale, Christie's, London, June 15, 1928, lot 48, to Colnaghi.]

1928

Colnaghi (London, England; New York, New York), sold to L. Gow, July 1928; transaction cancelled and painting returned to Colnaghi by November 1928; sold to F. B. Daniell and Son, 1928.

1928 -

F. B. Daniell and Son

Charles Russell

1960

Estate of Charles Russell [sold, Sotheby's, London, December 7, 1960, lot 9, to Thomas Agnew & Sons, Ltd.]

1960 - 1961

Thomas Agnew & Sons, Ltd. (London, England), sold to J. Paul Getty, 1961.

1961 - 1976

J. Paul Getty, American, 1892 - 1976 (Malibu, California; Sutton Place, Surrey, England), upon his death, held in trust by the estate.

1976 - 1978

Estate of J. Paul Getty, American, 1892 - 1976, distributed to the J. Paul Getty Museum, 1978.

Exhibitions
Art Treasures of the United Kingdom Collected at Manchester in 1857 (May 5 to October 17, 1857) (Cat. 198)
  • Art Treasures Palace, (Manchester)
Sir Peter Lely, 1618-80 (November 17, 1978 to March 18, 1979) (Cat. 49)
  • National Portrait Gallery (London), November 17, 1978 to March 18, 1979
Painted Ladies: Women at the Court of Charles II (October 11, 2001 to March 17, 2002) (Cat. 49)
  • National Portrait Gallery (London), October 11, 2001 to January 6, 2002
  • Yale Center for British Art, (New Haven), January 25 to March 17, 2002