Ritratto di giovane (c.1470)

Antonello da Messina (c.1430-1479)

Ritratto di giovane (Portrait of a Young Man)
Oil on wood, 27 x 20.6 cm
Metropolitan Museum of ArtNew York

Trained in Naples in the Netherlandish technique of oil painting, Antonello set the standard for portraiture when he went from Sicily to Venice in 1475. The incipient smile in this portrait provides an indication of the inner life of the sitter, who engages the viewer with his direct gaze. Through these subtle effects, Antonello endowed his portraits with suggestions of personality, in addition to capturing surface appearances. (MET)