Newly Discovered Van Dyck Comes By Way of Museum Project

Olivia Boteler Porter

The fascinating part of the story of the discovery of a new work by Old Master Anthony van Dyck comes after the painting itself:

The oil on canvas by Van Dyck was found at the Bowes Museum in Barnard Castle in County Durham in northeast England. Van Dyck was born in Antwerp in 1599 and was famous for his paintings of Charles I, the king who was executed after the English Civil War in 1649.

“To find a portrait by Van Dyck is rare enough, but to find one of his ‘friendship portraits’ like this, of the wife of his best friend in England (Endymion Porter), is extraordinarily lucky,” said Bendor Grosvenor, an art historian and dealer.

The painting was in a bad state, and was listed as “a copy after Sir Anthony Van Dyck.” As such, it would probably only have made £5,000 (5,700 euros) at auction. It could now be worth £1 million.

The work came to light during photography of all 210,000 of the United Kingdom’s publicly held paintings. Yes, someone is creating a catalogue of the entire country’s painting patrimony.

Van Dyck Old Master Painting Found in England (