This miniature gouache on ivory painting is exciting because it is not a portrait of a person as these things so often are. Instead we have a second half 19th C. reproduction of Dutch painter Frans Hals' (c. 1582 - 1666) well known The Merry Drinker ( c. 1628-30). As Walter Liedtke states in a Metropolitan Museum of Art essay on Hals, he was second only to Rembrandt and Vermeer, but also was closely studied by the burgeoning cadre of impressionist painters from the Continent and America. We believe that our example is one specimen of this keen study of Hals.
While our work is not an exact reproduction of the color scheme of the original, the artist has reproduced its likeness and mood. Clearly he was experimenting with color when he chose the ones used to paint the miniature.
The painting is in excellent condition, but its frame suffers decay. As friends of the past, we prefer to leave the painting with its framing as a safe holder until the new owner choses a replacement.
The painting is signed n. Hals, which is probably the Dutch abbreviation for "na" - ie "after". Hence the painter of the miniature is most likely Dutch.
This painting is an exciting one to own since the original will never be available to a private collector.
Liedtke, Walter. “Frans Hals (1582/83–1666).” In Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2000–. http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/hals/hd_hals.htm (August 2011)
Dimension: 5 1/2" x 4 3/8 (framed)