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Premier Old Master Paintings for Sale in London

Sheila Gibson Stoodley

Dealers and collectors of old master paintings will descend on London for its fourth annual Master Paintings Week, taking place from June 29 to July 6. Whitfield Fine Art, which specializes in Caravaggio-influenced works, will offer Theodor Rombouts’ 16th-century image A Drinker with a Flask. The oil on canvas, priced at $350,000, was recently attributed to Rombouts, a northern European painter who spent almost a decade in Rome. Caravaggio famously depicted the god Bacchus hoisting a goblet, but Rombouts and his expatriate compatriots innovated by showing mere mortals enjoying a drink. “He painted with gusto the people he found in the taverns in Rome,” says Clovis Whitfield, director of the gallery.

A portrait of Jane Seymour, Henry VIII’s third and favorite wife, is the headline attraction at the Weiss Gallery. Seymour’s family probably commissioned it after she died soon after giving birth to the English king’s first, and as it would turn out, only son, Edward. Before the Weiss Gallery acquired the portrait at a Sotheby’s auction last year, it had never left the possession of the Seymour family. Lacking a live sitter, the anonymous painter, who worked sometime between 1536 and 1540, focused on more general aspects—his subject’s pale skin, her blonde hair, her blue eyes, and her royal status. “This is almost like an iconographic image of her,” says Florence Evans, associate director of the gallery. “We do see a crown subtly suggested on the pattern of the bodice.” The oil on panel is priced at $525,000. (www.masterpaintingsweek.co.uk)

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