Sir William Killigrew was a courtier to Charles I, and later, a playwright. Van Dyck depicts him as a meditative scholar, his gaze withdrawn from the viewer. He leans pensively against the base of a column, and the viewer’s attention is drawn to a ring tied with a ribbon to his black satin jacket – perhaps in allusion to, or in memory of, a loved one.
Sir Anthony Van Dyck
Portrait of Sir William Killigrew
1052 x 841 mm
Oil Paint on Canvas
Date of work
Accepted by HM Government in lieu of tax with additional payment made with assistance from the Art Fund, the Patrons of British Art and Christopher Ondaatje 2002.
Sir Anthony van Dyck (1599–1641) was a Flemish Baroque artist who became the leading court painter in England, after enjoying great success in Italy and Flanders. He is most famous for his portraits, painted with a relaxed elegance that became the dominant influence on English portrait painting for the next 150 years.