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This is a fine large 19th century oil on canvas depicting a double portrait of two young Belle Epoque beauties at a masked ball by the eminent Paris Salon painter Jean-François Portaels (1818-1895). ‘Masquerade’ is signed by the artist and hangs in a superb quality newly commissioned gold metal leaf frame. The painting is also sold with its original 19th century French frame. In 1979, the painting was part of the exhibition ‘From Navez to Devos’ featuring important Belgian art from 1787 to 1954.

As with all of the original antique oil paintings we sell it is offered in excellent condition, having just been professionally cleaned and re-varnished.

In 1841 Jean-François Portaels enrolled at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris and became a pupil of the great French history painter Paul Delaroche (1797-1856). The following year Portaels won first prize in the Belgian Prix de Rome and would go on to become one of the most successful Belgian artists of the second half of the 19th century.

In addition to being a renowned painter of subject pictures and orientalist subjects, Portaels was in great demand as a portrait artist with wealthy French clients and members of the Belgian aristocracy. In 1851 he received the Grand Cordon in the Order of Leopold and later admitted as a member of the Royal Academy of Science, Letters and Fine Arts. In 1865 had was appointed artistic advisor to King Leopold II and became director of the Academy of Fine Arts of Ghent and the Académie Royale des Beaux-Arts in Brussels. Today, his paintings are held in numerous important private collections and European museums.

Dimensions: (framed) 86cm x 69cm (33¾” x 27”)
Dimensions: (canvas only) 68cm x 51cm (26¾ x 20”)
Medium: Oil on canvas.
Provenance: 1979; shown in Brussels at the ‘From Navez to Devos’ exhibition. Private French collection.
Presentation: Fine neoclassical gilt metal leaf frame. All of the new frames we commission are especially made for us to order by one of the UK’s top period frame makers.
Condition: Excellent. Newly professionally cleaned and re-varnished. Ready to hang.


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