Provenance: Private Collection, Bath, England; Wilkins & Wilkins Art Dealers; Private Collection London, England
This intriguing portrait is partially the work of John Weesop, a little known Dutch artist who came to England in 1641 and reportedly left after the execution of Charles I in 1649. His style represents a synthesis of both Van Dyke and Lely, the present portrait bearing a similarity to that of Lady Lucy Pelham by Lely in the Collection of the Earl of Yarborough. The paintings that have survived by him clearly demonstrate his exceptional abilities as a portraitist and clearly show that he developed a practice that appealed to the aristocracy as well as the comfortable landed gentry under the Stuart monarchy.
This portrait probably was an unfinished head and shoulders sketch by Weesop that appears to have been completed by another hand at a later date. The elegant attire whilst accurately observed and rendered is likely to have been added in the 18th century when the canvas was also slightly enlarged, probably to balance in proportions with another portrait which was to hang close to.
Examples of Weesop’s work can be found in the collection of the Duke of Buccleuch at Boughton House, Northamptonshire and National Portrait Gallery, London at Lyme Park, Stockport