Morten Thrane Brünnich, Portrait Of A Gentleman

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An exceptional 19th-century portrait of a gentleman wearing a black coat along with a white cravat and stiff upstanding collar. The artist, Morten Thrane Brünnich (1805-1861), has captured the details so brilliantly and was clearly academy trained.

Little is known about Brünnich but it’s possible that he was the son of a well-known Danish zoologist by the same name. If so, that would mean his grandfather was also a portrait painter, so perhaps this inspired him.

The elder Morten Thrane Brünnich (1737-1827) sat for the great Jens Juel (1745-1802) who was one of the foremost portraitists of his generation. So you can imagine the young Morten being surrounded by a high standard of artists during his childhood.

The portrait is housed within a 19th-century frame, which is probably the original.

Medium
Oil on canvas
Overall size
16” x 19⅓” / 41cm x 49cm
Year of creation
1838
Provenance
Denmark
Condition
Areas of craquelure but the paint layer is stable. Scuffing around the edges and one or two minor losses.
Artist’s auction highlight
£7,160 achieved for ‘Portraits of the children of the Grand Duke Michel Pavlovitch, Marie, Elisabeth and Catherine’.