Potrait of Man

French (Limoges)
16th century
Made at Limoges (France)

Object Place: Europe, Limoges, France


19.37 x 14.92 cm (7 5/8 x 5 7/8 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Painted enamel on copper

On View

Alyce Morrissey Gallery (Kunstkammer) (Gallery 143)





Painted enamel. Profile of a man facing left wearing a black cap & cloak, against blue ground. Gilded lines & white edge (chipped in 2 places & long strip missing). Mottled back. Framed in gilded metal with scalloped inner edge, rope border & 4 foliate mounts, top & bottom one. Possibly attributed to Leonard Limousin.

This noble portrait of an unidentified man displays the refined enamel technique for which Limoges had been famous for centuries. Powdered glass and pigments in a water or oil medium were applied to a metal base, then fired to produce a smooth, hard, vitreous surface. Remarkably durable, colors in enamel do not change or fade over time. This plaque presents the striking profile portrait of a distinguished sitter in contemporary dress in a particularly French technique.


Acquired from Seligmann and Co. by Otto H. Kahn (b. 1867 - d. 1934), New York [see note 1]; 1934, to the Mogmar Art Foundation [see note 2]; 1945, sold by Mogmar Art Foundation to the Brummer Gallery, New York (stock no. N6209); 1947, sold by Brummer to the MFA for $2,000. (Accession Date: November 13, 1947)

[1] According to an inventory of the Mogmar Art Foundation (June 26, 1934) on file at the Getty Research Institute (Duveen Brothers Records, Box 472), cat. no. MAF 4C. At that time it was being kept by Duveen, New York. [2] The Mogmar Art Foundation was a private corporation that kept parts of Kahn's art collection after his death. On the Brummer inventory card, Otto Kahn was originally listed as the seller; his name was crossed out, and the Mogmar Art Foundation was written instead.

Credit Line

1941 Purchase Fund (Juliana Cheney Edwards Collection)