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Video transcript

art historians generally like to discuss things that they do know things that they've discovered things that they're sure of but so often we don't know much and that's certainly the case with this stunning portrait by Petrus Christus called only portrait of a young woman so let's start with what we do know we know that this is a young woman we know who the artist is we know that the artist is Flemish and that Portia was made around 1470 we of course know its dimensions it's quite small it's made out of oil and it's on panel and we know that it's exquisite and we also know that this portrait is somewhat revolutionary Petrus Christus was the first artist in Flanders to place his subjects in an actual space and although there's not much we do see a bit of molding a rear wall and it does place her in space so what do we want to know that we don't know about her I'm really hungry for information I want to know so much I want to know who she is I want to know what she's thinking about I want to know where she's looking I want to know what if anything she's holding in her hands I want to know who this portrait was made for who commissioned it and what was its purpose I wanna know if this is the first time she's ever worn this fabulous dress I want to know what that little loop is just over her forehead the peeks out from under her hat I want to know what she dreams about at night I want to know if she has any ambitions I wouldn't know how old she is but you know what even though we know so little about this I still love looking at it you