Self-Portrait in Profile Annibale Carracci Buy Art Prints Now
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Tom Gurney BSc (Hons) is an art history expert with over 20 years experience
Published on June 19, 2020 / Updated on October 14, 2023
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This painting was completed by Annibale Carracci in circa 1600 and it helps us to learn more about his own appearance as a young man.

This self portrait captures the artist from the side in profile. It is the lighting which is particularly notable in this painting, with most of the scene darkened to allow this side of his face to be vibrant by contrast. There is also lighter colour added to the clothing around his neck as well.

The artist sports a goaty beard in this portrait and also looks relatively young. It is his only portrait that is considered amongst his career highlights, with this genre being more closely linked to the likes of Rembrandt van Rijn who generated a profitable business from this alone.

Perhaps the most famous self-portrait of all would have to be Diego Velazquez’s Las Meninas from the Prado Museum. His innovation is particularly memorable, placing himself subtly in the background of the scene. There are suggestions that earlier artist's in the Renaissance used a similar method but most of those have not been entirely confirmed. Sandro Botticelli, Masaccio and Giotto are all mentioned as featuring in fresco works, but it has proved particularly difficult to confirm any of them confidently.