We knew we had some wonderful stories to discover on the backs of our paintings. A decision was taken to exhibit 6 of them backwards for the first months of the season. More information continues to be uncovered about our fabulous collection.
One of Upton’s paintings, Philip the Fair, has a label on the back written in French. Jane, one of our volunteers, has translated the letter. This gives a new meaning to our understanding and adds a new layer to the painting’s history.
Philip the Fair was Archduke of Austria and son of the Emperor Maximilian. In 1504 he became King of Castile and Leon, and Philip I of Spain. This picture was probably painted just after his marriage to Joanna the Mad (the second daughter of Ferdinand and Isabella of Castile) in 1496.
Philip 1st (the Handsome)
Archduke of Austria and King of Castile
2nd son of Maximilian 1st Emperor of Germany
and of Maria of Burgundy daughter of
Charles the Bold
Born in Burgos * on 22nd July 1478
The letter on the back gives an outline of the life of Philip the Fair – his marriage and his death. There is also mention of other versions of this portrait. But why was the note written? Who has owned the painting in the past?
Our interest is constantly kept alive by the opinions offered by paintings experts and enhanced by the research conducted by our volunteers.
Now that we have the paintings back in the Picture Gallery, what will you discover next time you visit?