Girolamo Forabosco (Italian, 1604/05-1679)
c. 1650
Oil on canvas 
32-1/2 x 26 in. (82.6 x 66.0 cm) 
Credit Line:
The Norton Simon Foundation 
Accession Number:
© The Norton Simon Foundation 
Not on View

Forabosco was a prominent baroque portrait painter, born in Venice and active there and in nearby Padua. His colors and use of light blend to give a gauzy, atmospheric effect, one reminiscent of his teacher Padovanino. Almost lost in the background top corners are two inscriptions that have been read as “EG;” it has been suggested that this may be a portrait of Eleanora Guadagni, although this proposal and a Guadagni provenance have not been confirmed.

The earliest secure reference to this painting is found in a public auction catalogue of the holdings of Sir William Richard Drake in 1891, where it is attributed to the School of Bronzino and called “Portrait of Eleanor Guadagni, in peasant costume, working lace”. The attribution to Forabosco was made later by the art historian William Suida, after it had entered the Duveen stock as part of the en bloc purchase of the Benson collection in 1927.


Palazzo Guadagni, Piazza Santo Spirito, Florence.
Sir William Richard Drake, Oatlands Lodge, Weybridge, Surrey (sale, London, Christie’s, 27 June 1891, lot 154, as School of Bronzino, for 5-1/2 gns., to);
Charles Fairfax Murray, buying for;
Robert H. (1850-1929) and Evelyn Holford Benson, London, sold 1 June 1927 to;
[Duveen Bros., New York, stock no. 29351, as Venetian School, sold, as Forabosco, 1965 to];
The Norton Simon Foundation (sale, London, Sotheby Parke Bernet, 16 July 1980, lot 18, bought-in);
The Norton Simon Foundation (sale, London, Christie’s, 18 December 1980, lot 271, ill., bought-in, returned 13 February 1981 to);
The Norton Simon Foundation.

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