8 July 2016
Circle of the Master of the Female Half-Lengths (active Antwerp 1520-1540)
Saint Mary Magdalene reading at a table, with a red rose before her
oil on panel
16 x 11 ¾ in. (40.2 x 30 cm.)
(Possibly) King Henry VIII (see note).
with Arthur de Heuvel, Brussels, from whom acquired in the 1970s by the following,
Anonymous sale; Christie’s, Amsterdam, 9 November 2010, lot 13.
Contact Client Service
New York +1 212 636 2000
London +44 (0)20 7839 9060
Asia +852 2760 1766
+44 (0)20 7389 2243
(Probably) D. Starkey (ed.), The Inventory of King Henry VIII, (Society of Antiquaries MS 129 and British Library MS Harley 1419), London, 1998, p. 237, no. 10590.
The prominent rose, shown lying face on to the viewer in the present work, which would seem not to appear in any of the other versions of this composition, bears a striking similarity to the famous emblem of the Tudor monarchy. In the inventories of the Royal Collections following the death of King Henry VIII, the picture described as ‘Item a nother lesse Table with the picture of Marye Magdaleyne looking on her booke the boxe standing before her’ (op. cit.) accords with the present panel. The rose on the Magdalene’s table in this picture would seemingly strengthen the connection between the two works.
Artists, patrons and critics have argued for centuries over the right way to frame a painting. Ultimately, it’s a matter of personal taste, says Andrew Graham-Dixon
Andrew Graham-Dixon on how full-length portraits have been used in history to boost the status of kings and commoners
Christie’s specialists, a gallerist, a conservator and an expert consultant share their inside knowledge with Holly Black
Why ‘grubby’ paintings are the best, fluctuating humidity is a painting’s worst enemy — and a coffee stain can be worth keeping (if it was made by Picasso)
What leading art, technology and finance specialists said at the inaugural Art +Tech Summit at Christie’s in London
From Connecticut to Kent in southeast England, homes with links to such classic works as Desire under the Elms, Lord of the Flies and The Deep Blue Sea