Portrait of Cardinal César d'Estrées (1671-1714)
Jacob Ferdinand Voet (1639-1700) known as "Monsù Ferdinand"
1673, Oil on canvas
In this young, frivolous prelate one can recognise Cardinal César d'Estrées, painted by Jacob Ferdinand Voet in the second half of the 17th century. The Flemish painter also portrayed the cardinal in a different pose, with his face turned to the right rather than to the left, as in this version. This work is characterised by a rapid, summary paint handling, with brushstrokes applied in thin, very viscous layers. The three-dimensional rendering of the cap is quite remarkable, with the use of very subtle transparencies, which on close observation almost seem to dissolve. The billowing hair, with the two small locks spilling out onto the forehead, the thin moustache, the contemptuous, almost defiant expression, the long jabot (very common among French cardinals and already in fashion in the 18th century), are more suited to a young man accustomed to worldly life than to a cardinal of the Holy Roman Church.