This Mannerist portrait of a man holding a statuette was painted by Bronzino in an unknown year. Born and trained in Florence, Agnolo di Cosimo, widely known as ‘Bronzino’, received his first Medici commissions as a young man and cemented his reputation as a talented portraitist, ultimately becoming a court painter to the Duke.
Following the tradition of Mannerist portraiture, this image presents us with a carefully posed, stoically enigmatic image that seems to deny the viewer any knowledge about the sitter.
It was sold to Louis XIV as a portrait of the sculptor Baccio Bandinelli, painted by Sebastiano del Piombo. Today, the identity of the subject remains unknown, but an existing self-portrait of Bandinelli (Uffizi Gallery, Florence) proves that it is not him.
Bronzino’s Portrait of a Man Holding a Statuette can be found in the Musée du Louvre in Paris, France.