Master of the 1540s

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Portrait of a young woman by The Master of the 1540s, oil on oak panel, 1541, Art Gallery of New South Wales

The Master of the 1540s was a South Netherlandish painter active between 1541 and 1551. About thirty portraits dating to that decade have been ascribed to him; the identity of one of the sitters, Gillis van Shoonbeke (guardian of the hospital in Antwerp), indicates that the artist was active in that city. His clientele appears to have been more modest than that patronized by Antonis Mor and Willem Key, but his paintings display considerable talent and cultivation.

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