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Now for something completely different (XXXIX)

12 May

A Date With Judy (1954 vol. 39)

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I am ashamed to say that in all this discussion of Judith and Judy, I have ignored one of these most important women to carry the name: Judith Leyster.

Leyster (nee Jans) was a Dutch Golden Age painter, one of three significant women artists at that time.  Unlike the other two who specialized in floral still-lifes, Leyster painted genre works, and a few portraits.  Her work was executed before the birth of her children and was largely forgotten until 1893 when the Louvre purchased a painting by Frans Hals only to find it had been painted by Judith Leyster.

Judith Leyster, “Self portrait,” c. 1630, Oil on canvas, 746 × 653 mm, National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C., USA

Judith Leyster, “The Happy Couple,” 1630, Oil on canvas, 68 × 55 cm, Louvre Museum , Paris, France

The most noteworthy thing about her paintings?  Everyone looks jolly and healthy and happy.  No severed heads to be found.

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