Artist: Velázquez (Diego Rodríguez de Silva y Velázquez) (Spanish, Seville 1599–1660 Madrid)
Date: ca. 1630–35
Medium: Oil on canvas
Dimensions: 27 x 21 3/4 in. (68.6 x 55.2 cm)
Credit Line: The Jules Bache Collection, 1949
Accession Number: 49.7.42
This arresting portrait is a study for the figure that appears on the right of the painter’s Surrender of Breda (Prado, Madrid). The large canvas in Madrid depicts a historical event and includes a number of portraits. It has been argued that the man on the right in the painting could be a self-portrait of Velázquez. It has, however, been questioned whether the painter would have been permitted to introduce his portrait into a painting that illustrates a historical event and was destined to decorate a royal residence. This may be, perhaps, the self-portrait listed in an inventory of the artist’s possessions drawn up in July 1661.