This beautiful portrait shows great psychological insight and also great solemnity: the expression of the lady is human and formal at the same time. Her dress is beautifully decorated with gold and silver brocade that generate an almost abstract, modern effect.
The rings she is wearing, the rose on the table (a sign of love) and the irises (purity) suggest that this work was made on the occasion of an engagement or wedding.
Although our painting is clearly Spanish (there is, for example, much analogy with the oeuvre of Jorge de la Rua and also Juan Pantoja de la Cruz, but he is of a later generation), it also contains very clear Flemish and northern influences. Painters such as Pieter Pourbus, Frans I Pourbus, Willem Key and especially Anthony Mor Van Dashorst were very popular and well-known at the Spanish and Habsburg courts.
The dating (1555) and the age of the lady (AETATIS.SVE.22) are prominently displayed.
Oil on Canvas, 110 x 69cm