Portrait of a Nobleman is an oil on canvas painting from the 18th century, created by Swedish Rococo painter Alexander Roslin. This remarkable portrait showcases Roslin’s insight into his subjects as he depicts a member of the French aristocracy standing in blue and gilt embroidered suit, lace collar and cuffs, a red cloak, and a wig.
The painter has adapted his sketches of Gustav into the canvas to create this successful composition. Roslin’s sensitivity and tastefulness in painting are highlighted in this portrait through his ability to capture the essence of the nobleman’s character and status.
The unique use of colors like blue, gold and red alongside exquisite embroidery work complements the natural skin tones of the subject making it stand out. However, changes in taste may make it appear “stiff or lifeless” to some modern observers.
Portrait of a Nobleman is one piece among Roslin’s artworks that demonstrate his mastery at capturing people’s emotions through art, and is an excellent example of why Alexander Roslin is revered worldwide for being one amongst Rococo art’s greats.