Self-portrait at The Louvre – painted for Paul Fréart de Chantelou (1650)

The Louvre Museum, Richelieu wing, 2nd floor, room 14

Oil on canvas, 98 x 74 cm

Poussin painted two self-portraits in the same year, one for Jean Pointel, which is now kept at the Gemäldegalerie of Berlin, the other – which set the image of Poussin for posterity – for Paul Fréart de Chantelou, a friend and patron of the artist. The latter wanted a portrait of the artist, not necessarily a self-portrait, and asked him to assign the task to a portraitist from Rome. However, upon reflection, Poussin decided to paint himself.

Self-portrait, The Louvre, 1650

The portrait is signed: Effigies Nicolai Poussini Andelyensis Pictoris. Anno Aetatis 56. Romae Anno jubilei 1650 (portrait of painter Nicolas Poussin from Les Andelys, aged 56, completed in Rome in 1650 – see the details of the work below).

Self-portrait at The Louvre, 1650 - Detail 1 Self-portrait at The Louvre, 1650 - Detail 2 Self-portrait at The Louvre, 1650 - Detail 3 Self-portrait at The Louvre, 1650 - Detail 4

One thought on “Self-portrait at The Louvre – painted for Paul Fréart de Chantelou (1650)”

  1. Why isn’t Poussin ( as one of the greatest artists from the 17th cent) painted by other artists?
    Why he did not wanted some other artist to paint him for Chantelou?
    and why he preferred to paint himself despite he had other more important works to finish?
    Why he painted himself ( only twice one for Chantelou and one for Pointel) each time in the same 3/4 face view, looking even in the same direction?
    The answer: “because he didn’t like to see his face in profile/nor in 4/5 view due to a strongly overhanging nose point and an exagerated strong chin. Despite this, he was authoritative and a strong personality.
    He was portrayed by Francois Duquesnoy , a vif, simply and au naturel. The marble in Bode Museum isn’t Poussin as isn’t the Wildenstein terra cotta.

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