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Portrait of a Young Girl as Granida (Primary Title) Portrait of a Young Girl Dressed as a Hunter with a Dead Thrush and Leaping Spaniel (Former Title)
This young girl from Dordrecht in the Netherlands
is playacting the Persian princess Granida, the title
heroine of a pastoral play by Pieter Corneliszoon Hooft
(1581–1647) that became one of the most popular pieces
of Dutch Golden Age literature after its publication in
1615. By casting his sitter in the role of this charismatic
huntress, Maes made clever use of the well-established
tradition of the portrait historié (historicizing portrait)
to suggest the moral expectations of his patrons for
their progeny. The girl’s hunting garb is classicizing
and whimsical, while her engagement with the sport
as leisure would have signaled her patrician status to
her contemporaries. The large house across the river is
presumably her family residence, and the spaniel that
prances at her side is a sort of totem of their insistence
on obedience and proper training. At the same time,
the dog figures as a foil to the child’s composure,
hinting at her energetic and capricious personality.
Signed lower left: NMAAS (NM in ligature)
The Jordan and Thomas A. Saunders III Collection
Some object records are not complete and do not reflect VMFA's full and current knowledge. VMFA makes routine updates as records are reviewed and enhanced.
Other Works In This Gallery
This artwork is on display in:
Saunders Collection: Baroque
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