Ritratto di uomo (c.1528)

Parmigianino (1503-1540)

Ritratto di uomo (Portrait of a Man)
c.1528
Oil on panel, 58 x 46 cm
Galleria BorgheseRoma

This panel is first documented in connection with the Borghese Collection in 1693, when it was inventoried as a work by Parmigianino. Critics have proposed various dates for the work, though it was probably executed in 1528 in Bologna, where the painter sought safety following the Sack of Rome on the part of the Landsknechts, which forced him to surreptitiously leave the Eternal City by night.

The painting is a frontal portrait of a young man who gazes at the observer. His dark attire has led some critics to propose that he was an ecclesiastic. It is also possible that he was a rich gentleman, as suggested by the tricorn hat and the characteristic robone, a type of mantle shaped like a toga. (GB)