Son of the painter Salomon de Bray, Jan spent virtually his entire career in Haarlem. After training with his father, he established himself as a portrait painter in 1650, a profession he continued for the following forty years. In addition to formal portraiture, De Bray also painted scenes of his family and friends in the guise of figures from history. This work reveals De Bray's ability to employ smooth brushwork and subtle gradations of light and shade to create an idealised image of a young girl. Her small smile and direct gaze exude the naturalness that was typical of De Bray's innovative portraiture.
We would like to thank Dr. Peter Biesboer for confirming the attribution to de Bray from photographs (written communication, 22 October 2008).