Portrait, probably of Mary-Anne-Christine of Bavaria (1660-1690), wife of Louis de France, the Dauphin thumbnail 1
Image of Gallery in South Kensington
On display at V&A South Kensington
Request to view at the Prints & Drawings Study Room, level F

Portrait, probably of Mary-Anne-Christine of Bavaria (1660-1690), wife of Louis de France, the Dauphin

Enamel Miniature
1680s (painted)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

This portrait is painted in enamel on metal. The advantage of enamel over traditional miniature painting (watercolour painted on vellum or, from about 1700, on ivory) is that it does not fade when exposed to light. The process of painting with enamels is, however, less free than the miniature technique and is fraught with danger. The first colours to be laid on the metal support have to be those needing the highest temperature when firing. More colour is added and the enamel refired, the process ending with the colours needing the lowest temperature. Such labour meant that it was an expensive option.

This enamel is by Jean Petitot, a goldsmith and jeweller. Petitot and his friend, the enameller Jacques Bordier, together developed the art of painting portraits in enamel using a previously unexplored range of colours and subtlety of tone. Petitot introduced the court of Charles I in England to this novel art in the late 1630s. It is likely that he left England before the execution of his patron, Charles I, in 1649. Thereafter he practised in France, painting many portraits of Louis XIV, his children and those connected with his court.

This enamel was formerly thought to be of Marie Thérèse, Queen of France from 1643 to 1715. Now it is thought to be of her daughter-in-law, Mary-Anne-Christine of Bavaria (1660-1690), wife of Louis De France, ‘Le Grand Dauphin’ (1661-1711).


object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Enamel miniature
Brief Description
Portrait enamel of a woman, formerly called Marie Therese of Spain, Queen of Louis XIV. Now thought to be of Mary Anne Christine of Bavaria (1660-1690) wife of the Dauphin, Louis De France (1661-1711). Enamel on metal, attributed to Jean Petitot (1607-1691), ca. 1680s.
Physical Description
Enamel miniature
Dimensions
  • Height: 26mm
  • Width: 23mm
Credit line
Bequeathed by John Jones
Production
Formerly thought to be Marie Thérèse of Spain, Queen of Louis XIV.
Subject depicted
Summary
This portrait is painted in enamel on metal. The advantage of enamel over traditional miniature painting (watercolour painted on vellum or, from about 1700, on ivory) is that it does not fade when exposed to light. The process of painting with enamels is, however, less free than the miniature technique and is fraught with danger. The first colours to be laid on the metal support have to be those needing the highest temperature when firing. More colour is added and the enamel refired, the process ending with the colours needing the lowest temperature. Such labour meant that it was an expensive option.



This enamel is by Jean Petitot, a goldsmith and jeweller. Petitot and his friend, the enameller Jacques Bordier, together developed the art of painting portraits in enamel using a previously unexplored range of colours and subtlety of tone. Petitot introduced the court of Charles I in England to this novel art in the late 1630s. It is likely that he left England before the execution of his patron, Charles I, in 1649. Thereafter he practised in France, painting many portraits of Louis XIV, his children and those connected with his court.



This enamel was formerly thought to be of Marie Thérèse, Queen of France from 1643 to 1715. Now it is thought to be of her daughter-in-law, Mary-Anne-Christine of Bavaria (1660-1690), wife of Louis De France, ‘Le Grand Dauphin’ (1661-1711).
Collection
Accession Number
657-1882

About this object record

Explore the Collections contains over a million catalogue records, and over half a million images. It is a working database that includes information compiled over the life of the museum. Some of our records may contain offensive and discriminatory language, or reflect outdated ideas, practice and analysis. We are committed to addressing these issues, and to review and update our records accordingly.

You can write to us to suggest improvements to the record.

Suggest Feedback

record createdJuly 9, 2003
Record URL