Léonard Limosin was the greatest enamel painter working in the style of the School of Fontainebleau, Italian Mannerists and French artists active at the French court from about 1530 to 1570. Limosin's enameled portraits are numerous, and he has been ranked, along with Jean Clouet (1486–1540) and Corneille de Lyon (before 1500–1574), as the best portrait painter of Renaissance France. This plaque, one of at least six based on a drawing attributed to Limosin (Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris), portrays the brother-in-law of the French king, François I (1497–1547), who ruled the independent kingdom of Navarre from 1518 until 1555.
Signature: At lower left: L.L. 1556
M. Préaux (until 1850; sale, Paris, January 9–11, 1850, no. 231; sold to Pourtalès); James Alexandre, le comte de Pourtalès-Gorgier (1850–65; Pourtalès-Gorgier sale, Paris, February 1865, no. 1760 ); [ Wildenstein and Co., Inc. , New York, until 1925; sold to Jules Bache ] ; Jules S. Bache (1925–44; to MMA)